Bloomberg to the Rescue? He Is Said to Represent 'Post-Partisanship,' but If So-If He Is Not a Partisan of Any Large, Controversial Causes-Why Is He Needed?

By Will, George F. | Newsweek, July 2, 2007 | Go to article overview

Bloomberg to the Rescue? He Is Said to Represent 'Post-Partisanship,' but If So-If He Is Not a Partisan of Any Large, Controversial Causes-Why Is He Needed?


Will, George F., Newsweek


Byline: George F. Will

George Washington Plunkitt (1842-1924), who practiced what he cheerfully called "honest graft" on behalf of Tammany Hall (and himself), made up with pith what he lacked in polish when he explained: "I seen my opportunities and I took 'em." Today another New Yorker, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, is weighing his opportunities which, because he is a billionaire, he thinks might include becoming president.

He has a versatility of allegiance. A liberal Democrat until 2001, he then fancied becoming mayor, so he became a Republican to avoid a Democratic primary. Last week he said he is now an independent.

The most consequential American third-party candidate was Ralph Nader in 2000. But for his 97,488 votes in Florida, which George W. Bush won by 537 votes, Al Gore probably would be finishing his second term. But even successful independent or third-party candidates have one thing in common: They lose.

A candidate can succeed in giving an aggrieved minority a voice--e.g., George Wallace, speaking for people furious about the'60s tumults. A candidate can highlight an issue, as Ross Perot did with the deficit in 1992. A candidate can advertise an entire agenda that the two major parties are slow to consider, as Socialist candidate Norman Thomas did several times. But the winner-take-all policy by which 48 states allocate electoral votes buttresses the two major parties. (Maine and Nebraska give an electoral vote to the winner of each of their congressional districts, and the two votes for their senators to the winner of the statewide popular vote, but neither state has ever had a divided allocation.) In 1992, Perot won 18.9 percent of the popular vote--and no electoral votes. In 1924, Wisconsin Sen. Robert La Follette, the Progressive Party's candidate, won almost 5 million votes (16.6 percent) but carried only Wisconsin.

In 1948, however, South Carolina's Gov. Strom Thurmond, the Dixiecrats' candidate, won only 2.4 percent of the vote but carried four Southern states with 38 electoral votes. The most spectacular popular participation in presidential politics outside the two-party framework got Wallace on all 50 states' ballots in 1968, when impediments to ballot access were much more onerous than they are today. In California, he had to get 66,000 signatures--not a daunting number, but he had to get them in 1967, and every person had to fill out a two-page legal-size form. In Ohio, he had to get the absurd total of 433,000--in just 10 weeks. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Bloomberg to the Rescue? He Is Said to Represent 'Post-Partisanship,' but If So-If He Is Not a Partisan of Any Large, Controversial Causes-Why Is He Needed?
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.