Inside Politics

By Pierce, Greg | The Washington Times (Washington, DC), January 24, 1997 | Go to article overview

Inside Politics


Pierce, Greg, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)


KEMP AND POWELL

Jack Kemp, who is certainly acting like a presidential candidate, has told associates that Colin Powell already has ruled out a White House run in 2000, the Associated Press reports.

Mr. Kemp plans to register a new political action committee early next month, and he is assuring skeptics he is committed to a presidential effort in 2000.

"In those conversations, according to several longtime associates, the 1996 GOP vice presidential nominee has dropped this nugget: Kemp says retired Gen. Colin Powell assured him that under no circumstances would he seek the presidency in three years," reporter John King writes.

"Indeed, Powell and Kemp have spoken several times since November. And Powell says he is quite content and has zero interest in politics. But close friends say he hasn't ruled out a candidacy, and they predict he will face stiff pressure to run after the 1998 midterm elections," the reporter added.

POPULAR WITH PRESS

Feminist icon Betty Friedan, attending Wednesday's luncheon of the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League, said the feminist movement is so popular that "even your women of the press have been coming up to me and saying, `Thank you, you've changed my life' and so on."

However, Mrs. Friedan's mood changed when free-lance newsman Marc Morano asked her about the issue of partial-birth abortion.

Mr. Morano said she became "extremely agitated" and replied: "That is a red herring. That is a diversionary issue. I just won't even discuss it."

At that point, she cut off the interview and shouted, "Don't bother me with it!"

DALEY BURGLARY

On the day Bill Daley was being grilled by a panel of senators at his confirmation hearing to become commerce secretary, his Chicago home was burglarized, Reuters reports.

Mr. Daley's brick home in an upscale neighborhood on the city's northwest side was empty at the time of the break-in yesterday.

A Chicago police spokesman said they were investigating the burglary but would not disclose what was taken.

MEDICARE CRUMBS

While some Republicans cheered the announcement that President Clinton will seek further restrictions on the growth of Medicare spending, the Wall Street Journal called the plan "a more abstemious version of the broken status quo."

"The president's ideas don't come close to solving Medicare's problems," the newspaper said in an editorial. "They'd kick them down the road past his own departure from office. The only thing more demoralizing than Mr. Clinton's punt is the duck-and-run response by Republicans in Congress. If this is the mush `bipartisanship' yields, how about a good brawl? . . .

"There's barely a decent policy idea in the White House proposal. Most of its `savings' come from the familiar habit of ratcheting up price controls on hospitals, doctors and insurers. It's easier to stick it to these GOP constituencies than to have seniors pay their fair share."

The newspaper said it was disappointed with the GOP response.

"House powers John Kasich and Bill Archer praised the president for moving all of $14 billion in their direction from last year to this. The GOP seems to believe that, after the last campaign, it has so little credibility with voters that it has to meekly accept whatever crumbs Mr. Clinton hands them."

TWO SOUTHERNERS

President Clinton was really pleased with the work of Congress last summer, or at least that's what he told USA Today, using spokesman Michael McCurry as a conduit.

"It would be ideal for Americans if we could re-create the environment we had in the closing weeks of the 104th session of Congress, where we actually got some good things done," Mr.

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