Has Al Gore lost the election? Yes.
By Alan Caruba
I know the polls show this to be a very close presidential election campaign but, if you step back from the flash polls and look at the bigger picture, what emerges is the number of voting blocs that have little reason or desire to support Al Gore and the Democratic ticket. Here's a bloc by bloc look at the current situation.
Consider just one small bloc, the Arab-American vote, estimated at some 300,000. The presence of Joe Lieberman, an Orthodox Jew, on his ticket makes it difficult for them to support Gore. In an ironic reflection of this, Gore may well have also lost a portion of the Jewish-American vote for the same reason.
A word of explanation on the latter. Jews have thrived in America precisely because they have preferred a low profile. This is not to say that Jews have not held positions of power near those who hold the highest level of executive power. No Jew, however, has ever been within a heartbeat of actually being President. It arouses ever-present Jewish fears of the ancient anti-Semitic slander that a secret Jewish cabal is running the world. The prospect of a Jewish Vice President makes some Jews nervous.
The selection of Sen. Joe Lieberman was initially seen as a benefit to Gore, but no longer. First, there are the new problems in the Middle East. Then there's his reversal of long-held political viewpoints, comments about wanting to meet Louis Farrakhan, his lackluster performance in the debate with Dick Cheney, and his failure to debate his Connecticut senatorial opponent. These have all added up to a net loss of confidence. He looks like just another politician.
There are other groups who are less than thrilled about a Jewish Vice President and the largest among them are African-Americans who to an unknown, but perhaps significant degree, harbor anti-Semitic feelings. Aside from the ravings of Minister Farrakhan the Black Muslim leader, the Rev. Al Sharpton reflects an even larger body of ill will. Both Gore and Hillary have sought his blessing. Since the days LBJ signed the Civil Rights Act, Democrats have been able to take African-Americans for granted.
It is essential, however, to keep in mind that not all African-Americans, nor all Jewish-Americans or any other ethnic, religious or national group are going to vote in lockstep. They won't. Hispanics are far more in tune with Bush than Gore. For one thing, his nephew is an Hispanic, the son of brother Jeb, and this young man has been campaigning extensively in the Hispanic communities around the nation.
Hispanics had a lot to do with George W. being elected to a second term as Governor of Texas and the guy actually speaks their language, mangling it with as much ease as he does English. More to the point, however, Hispanics are largely Catholic, family oriented, and anti-abortion, issues with which they have more in common with Bush.
Travel throughout the southwest and in southern California, and you will conclude you'd better start learning Spanish as a second language. Most certainly Gore cannot count on any votes from the large Cuban-American community in south Florida.
By extension, while not all Catholics are pro-life, those that are, Italian-American, Irish-American, Polish-American, and others who respect the Church's position may prove a very decisive factor for Bush. Nor should fundamentalist or born-again Christians, Baptists and other denominations, be overlooked. Their vote will most surely be in the Republican column.
Almost anyone sickened by Clinton's immoral behavior as President and Gore's "no controlling authority" fundraising. This is, in my view, the "X" factor in this election. Has anyone even heard Gore say "Clinton" in recent weeks? A sign that his campaign is in deep trouble would be the appearance of ads starring Clinton, just before the election, expressing his support for the Vice President.
The pundits say that Gore needs the unions and this is true, but many rank and file unionist members feel the Clinton-Gore administration has sold them out. They fear seeing more jobs go overseas. Union members have seen the US steel industry disappear and all they hear from Gore is a lot of ranting about Big Oil, Big Tobacco, Big Drug companies, corporate polluters, et cetera. This is an administration that has sat back and watched the timber industry fall prey to rabid environmentalists and thwarted the development of US-based petroleum development.
The most significant indicator that Gore is in deep trouble is the decision of one of the largest federal government employees unions, the National Association of Government Employees, that announced on Friday it is endorsing Bush. This union has an estimated 100,000 members. Their endorsement said, "Governor Bush will change the role of government for the better." This same union endorsed Clinton and Gore in both 1992 and 1996. About the only major unions left that might still support Gore are the teachers and there are indications here, too, that many rank and file members prefer the Bush approach to education given its success in Texas.
Members of the US military hate Clinton and, when they hear Gore and Lieberman talk about how prepared the military is versus George Bush saying we need to rebuild our military, it doesn't take a genius to figure out for whom they and their families will vote. Then add in veterans who watched the dead from the US Cole return. When George W. talks of putting two killers to death and a third in jail for life, police officers in America want to salute. And their wives vote too.
To these you can also add ranchers, farmers and workers in the timber industry. All have been savaged by the Clinton-Gore Environmental Protection Agency, the Bureau of Land Management, and other bureaucracies. Then, too, there are 80 million law-abiding gun-owners. The 4.1 million members of the National Rifle Association will not vote for Gore.
These are sizeable blocs of voters any one of which, in a very tight race, could tip the whole thing to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. So, the diviners of Democratic tea leaves and tarot cards have got to be worried.
Finally, there is Wall Street. A lot of investors have been signaling their concerns. If you haven't noticed, the Market has been tanking in recent weeks thanks to worries about higher energy prices, oil and natural gas shortages, and a slowdown among consumers consuming. Investors often predict changes and the only change immediately ahead is a change of who's running the country as of January 20th.
I think the pundits and media are beginning to think what I'm thinking. Eight years of Clinton administration lies, criminality, and immorality are catching up with Al Gore. Almost anything could tip the scales to Bush at this point and, with Clinton still in the Oval office, you just never know, do you? In just over two weeks, I believe we will see a Republican victory. A big one!
Alan Caruba posts a weekly column, "Warning Signs", on the website of The National Anxiety Center every Monday. This is an except. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and the Center can be accessed at www.anxietycenter.com.
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