20.8.03

MEDIAN VOTERS? Hugo Young complains that the Bush administration "is the hardest right administration since Herbert Hoover's from a very different era. And, which is the point, delights in being so." Does it follow that Administration policy is to the left of Calvin Coolidge's (President Coolidge was not impressed with Herbert Hoover, who he referred to as "Wonder Boy.) Mr Young has an observation that will no doubt be grist for scholars and junkies to consider for years. "For four years it has been idle to challenge the Florida vote and the bizarre workings of the electoral college, but now is the time to recall that in 2000 half a million more Americans voted for Al Gore's progressive version of the future than Bush's more conservative one. Bush was still posing as a bit centrist then, and Gore was scarcely a raving liberal. Gore mostly stuck to the Clinton third way doctrine that had taken the Democrats away from the narrowest version of their past." Would the Vice President had won had he lost the Walter Mondale imitation at the convention and run on the Administration's record, which was centrist ... in fact, no new open-taps entitlements in those years?

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