Is Gore dragging Bush leftward?

By Angela R. Wheeler
web posted September 18, 2000

George W. Bush seems to be using a clever, indeed Clintonesque strategy in his bid to become the next President of the United States. Former Clinton campaign advisor Dick Morris describes the Bush strategy as "pulling out Gore's teeth." In other words, by making Gore's issues such as prescription drug medicine coverage for seniors his own, Bush figures the race becomes a popularity contest. If that happens, Morris declares "Gore won't win." Perhaps Bush and his advisors learned a lot from Bill Clinton during the last eight years such as how to borrow your opponent's popular ideas and claim them as your own. Clinton did this when he signed the Republican welfare reform bill and acted as though it were his idea from the beginning.

George W. BushThe problem with Bush using this strategy against Gore is that the debate becomes which candidate will out-Democrat the other. And that means the political issue game is played entirely on the Democrats side of the court. Gamesmanship has become the surrogate for leadership in politics. The reason Bush and his advisors find this tactic effective is because public opinion polls have tilted in favor of the Democrats issues. But the reason for that is because the Democrats have convinced Americans that they need the things that Democrats are going to give them. So in the end, Democrats set the national agenda and force Republicans to play by their rules in a game Republicans have been losing for a long time.

Bush does claim to be strongly in favor of school choice, but absent is his criticism of Gore's hypocrisy on the matter. Why is Gore allowed to get away with sending his children to private schools that only rich people can afford, while telling the common people that public schools are just fine for their children? When Gore was asked by a Time magazine reporter why he could not find one public school in Washington, D.C good enough for his own children, instead of answering the question, he demanded that his children be left out of the debate. But this type of hypocrisy is standard for the limousine-liberals, who believe that the rules they create only apply to ‘ordinary' people – and not to the high-minded. They figure they're exempt from the laws they make for the rest of us.

That duplicity further extends to their energy policy as well. On Earth Day this year, Gore and his Hollywood pals were seen driving up in fleets of stretch-limousines and Suburbans to deliver their grandiose speeches proclaiming society must give up SUV's for the sake of saving the planet—excluding themselves, of course. Once again, the ordinary people must sacrifice but not the high-minded liberals; their good intentions afford them an exemption.

And what about these astronomical gasoline prices? The newswires have reported that Gore is trying to blame Bush and Cheney because Bush used to be an "oil-man" and Cheney has worked for a big oil company. Well on this one, Gore took a page right out of the Clinton handbook on propaganda, ignoring the fact that documents had surfaced that showed it was their own EPA rules that caused increased gas prices. But it took real hubris for Gore to talk about his opponent's connection to Big Oil companies while part of his and his family's fortune came from long-held stock in Occidental Petroleum.

Al GoreOn another note, Gore and Bush are both reaching out for the Senior Citizen's vote by promulgating a prescription drug program. Instead of adopting Gore's socialistic ideology and thus forcing it down the throats of all Americans like an uncoated aspirin, why doesn't Bush reach out to Seniors in a different way? Why not probe the question of whether Al Gore can ensure that all Seniors – or any of the rest of us for that matter -- will continue to have affordable air-conditioning?

Remember what happened when Gore told us Freon was no longer politically correct? The environment-friendly replacement was less effective and many times more expensive. But rest assured, Gore and other limousine liberals can afford it.

The duplicity of Gore and other such elitists like him is abundantly clear: while they ride in air-conditioned limos, they want the ordinary people driving Yugos with the windows rolled down; while they live in splendor on sprawling plantations, their policies advocate federalizing the common man's land so that bugs have room to procreate; and while they dine on champagne and caviar, they'll make sure there is a helping of government cake for the ordinary citizens to eat.

When the issues are presented in a straightforward manner, it becomes apparent to Americans that Gore's ideology is not in the best interest of America. Bush would be well advised to show Gore's hypocrisy, rather than validate it.

Angie Wheeler is the editor of the Free Congress Foundation's Notable News Now.

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