News Release

Beyond “Super Tuesday”

LEONARD WILLIAMS
Professor of political science at Manchester College and co-author of the recent Campaigns and Elections article “‘Moderates Win’ and Other Political Myths,” Williams said today: “In part the election fits the standard scenario of the more established candidates winning after a bit of trouble. But up to this point in the campaign there’s been more of a progressive ideological center of gravity than in years. There’s an emphasis on promoting education, protecting Social Security, having a Patients Bill of Rights and campaign finance reform. If you’d said all these things 10 years ago, you’d be laughed off the face of the earth. The Democratic Party had been running from organized labor and abortion rights, but not now. On the Republican side, you see attacks on conservative icons like Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell. You have McCain criticizing Bush for presenting a tax plan that favors the rich. And you see Bush attacking McCain on being weak on the environment and not funding breast cancer research.” On the other hand, Williams noted that last night Gore praised initiatives like “welfare reform,” which he had been avoiding.

STEFFIE WOOLHANDLER, M.D.
Woolhandler is director of the Center for National Health Program Studies at Harvard. She said today: “When Bill Bradley first announced his [health] plan he got a bounce — almost everyone liked the idea of universal health coverage. But the more people looked at the plan, the more it became clear that he really wasn’t offering anything, even if the rhetoric sounded good. Virtually the only people who had anything nice to say about it don’t know about health policy. While Gore and Bradley have poor health plans, the Republicans really haven’t addressed the issue, which is just their way of saying that Wall Street should run the health care system. People’s real problems with health care are not being addressed.”
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THEODORE LOWI
Professor in the Department of Government at Cornell University, Lowi wrote “The End of Liberalism” in 1969. In 1995, he published “The End of the Republican Era.” Today he said: “Such is the construction of the national Republican coalition that it cannot last. The New Deal coalition was predicated on government growth and that’s why it lasted so long, expanding and burning out during the Republican Nixon administration. Similarly, the conservatism that has since risen achieved its greatest power during the ’80s, culminating in the nominally Democratic Clinton administration. The three factions of the Republican Party cannot be held together — the liberal/libertarian country club faction; the traditional, secular conservative small town faction; and the Southern, sacred conservative faction. The fault lines are getting deeper…”

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy: Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; David Zupan, (541) 484-9167