[World History Archives]

U.S. Election 2000

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   U.S. electoral politics in general

   Documents for the political significance of Joseph Lieberman

The conventions
Loyal Opposition: The GOP's Lie-apalooza
By David Corn, AlterNet, 7 August 2000. Team Bush and the Republican Party demonstrated how well duplicity can be done during their warm-and-fuzzy, have-a-nice-election convention in Philadelphia. The GOP platform.
Bush Campaign To Return Blacks For Refund
From 2000 AbsoluteIdeas, 12 August 2000. A biting satire on the GOP's parading Blacks to buy legitimacy during the convention.
Post-convention analysis
From the Institute for Public Accuracy, 18 August 2000. Most of the words that floated from the podiums of the Democratic and Republican conventions amounted to little more than insipid drivel. Continuing the Clinton-Gore economic policies will do nothing to build a different, fairer economy. Etc.
Off Camera, Celebrating So It Counts
By Ruth Marcus, Washington Post, 21 August 2000. The television audience for the two party conventions may have been the smallest in decades, but the party-hopping audience was bigger, and the parties even more lavish than the excesses of four years ago. The nonstop festivities had a certain end of the Roman Empire feel.
Gen. Powell Invites You To Join The Grand Ole Party
By Elombe Brath, August 2000. Before Black people get swept up in the dust storm left by Ret. Gen. Colin Powell's speech to the Republican Convention which glorified most of the most reactionary leadership of the Grand Ole Party (GOP), we need to understand the man who spoke and who and what he was speaking for - and against.
The Post-Liberal Apocalypse. For four days in August, it was end-times in L.A.
By Barbara Ehrenreich, in The Progressive, 5 October 2000. Inside the Staples Center, delegates celebrated the most conservative Democratic ticket in at least fifty years. Outside, the uninvited shouted their conviction that the centers of power, Democratic Party included, have grown so hopelessly cruel and corrupt that they no longer deserve to hold.

The popular protest

Los Angeles: Quiet before the storm
By Jim Smith, L.A. Labor News, 13 August 2000. Anti-globalization, pro-democracy workers, students, socialists, anarchists and veterans of battles in Seattle, D.C., and Philadelphia are poised to confront those torchbearers of civilization and empire, the leaders of the Democratic Party.
Shadow Convention Speech (Los Angeles)(extract)
By Cornel West, Sunday 13 August 2000. I reached a point where working people and poor people are so disregarded and disrespected by a corporate-dominated Democratic party, that you have to begin a new cycle.
Qualifying the Police State
By Jamie Doucette, 17 Aug 2000. Concerning the way the media has not examined the policing of the protests, as well as other criticisms of power by many of the anarchists and youth involved in them. The coordination between police and the agenda of the state are still there; only the categories have changed.
Only 50% of Americans vote for the president and the protests outside the Democratic convention explain why
By Duncan Campbell, in Guardian, (London) 19 August 2000. The images symbolise both what is missing from conventional American politics, what divides the haves and have-nots of the world's richest country and what is fuelling the still unspecific but growing international movement that started in Seattle last year. The old order is no longer trusted by the very people - the young, the poor, the Latinos, the blacks - the candidates claim they want to help.
Convention Protests Bring Mixed Reactions
The Daily News, 21 August 2000. Protests outside the recent Republican and Democratic national conventions drew mixed reactions from the public, a recent nationwide poll shows. 32.9% said they were proud of the protesters, while another 31.2% said they were wary. Another 13.2% were sympathetic and 15.7% irritated while 6.9% said they were not sure.
15 October 2000. Every fourth year or so, most people are fooled again, and the people at the top of the pyramid, are laughing their masks off. All janitors we put in charge are just caretakers of a completely whacked system, a system inherently wrong. To discuss who this person should be, whether it is bush, gore or nader is really beside the point. In my opinion the system can't be reformed, it can't be changed, and it can't be overturned from within. Don't vote. If you do, you'll lose all chance of influencing what direction humanity should take.

The debates

The debates: Truth is stranger than science fiction
By Norman Solomon, Creators Syndicate, 20 October 2000. A satire on the debates.
Why Voters Will Lose Out In Tuesday's Debate
Four years ago, President Clinton was returned to office by only slightly less than 25 percent of the electorate. Democracy is in a serious crisis when more than 94 million voters stay at home and turn their backs on the precious right to select the people who will lead the nation. Commanding the money, the media, and the access to both the ballots and debates, the Republican and Democratic parties have designed and enforced a closed system that largely shuts out new parties and new ways to strengthen our democracy.

The issues

The 2000 Presidential Election: History, Ideology and Race
By Manning Marable, July 2000. Months ago, the white conservative establishment decided that it would back George W. Bush for the presidency, because he was safe, stupid, and willing to serve as a frontman for its reactionary agenda. But sometimes the lesser evil is just plain evil. The African-American community should critically examine the whole rotten two-party system and whether it makes sense to continue voting for a politics that we don't want, just to defeat a politics that is worse. Perhaps the time has come to make a break with the failed politics of the past, and to chart a new course despite the tremendous odds against us.
It's Time For Electoral Reform
By Dave Steele, Ithaca Today Editorial, 7 August 2000. The current electoral system is undemocratic and corrupt. The two parties differ only slightly in the policies they advocate. It is money that powers the system.
AU's Lynn Urges Candidates To Reaffirm Church-State Separation
Americans United statement on the role of religion and politics in the presidential campaign, 9 August 2000.
Election campaign or religious revival?
AANews, 12 August 2000. The ethos of the election 2000 campaign, where parties and candidates stumble over each other in a frenetic effort to showcase their commitment to "moral values" and religion-friendly social schemes ranging from vouchers to public support of faith-based programs.
The Next President. The Unspoken Issue: The Impact of Globalization
Weekly Global Intelligence Update, 14 August 2000. The most potentially divisive - and unspoken - issue of all: globalization. As the Democratic Party meets in Los Angeles, this issue is at the root of the next president's choices on foreign policy. And this is the one thing neither major candidate will dare discuss.
Presidential Debates Should Serve -- Not Subvert -- Democracy
By Jeff Milchen, JINN Magazine, 14 August 2000. The televised presidential debates are the single most influential forum for most Americans who are trying to decide whether they should vote and who to vote for. these debates are now controlled by a private corporation that is purely a tool of the Democratic and Republican parties and operates without any public oversight.
US Presidential Election: What's in It for Africa?
By John Stremlau, Mail and Guardian (Johannesburg) 18 August 2000. Will any conceivable outcome of the U.S. election alter current US foreign policy in ways that will affect Africa? Al Gore is more expert on world affairs, but Joseph Lieberman's selection suggests foreign policy is irrelevant to today's politics. Both presidential candidates say almost nothing about Africa. US's current Africa policy will likely continue whoever is elected.
Religion, politics becoming uneasy mix, some say; Policy issues taking a back seat to piety
By Miles Benson, The New Orleans Times-Picayune, 20 August 2000. Thomas Jefferson, the Democratic Party's founder, warned Americans about political leaders who preach about religion. Holy scripture instead of the Constitution is the basis for making laws, and that is a very dangerous idea. This is still a democracy, not a theocracy.
Voting and African Americans
Letter to the editor of the New York Times, by Dave Silver, 21 August 2000. Will voting for the Democrats or Republicans make a significant difference in the lives of most African-Americans? Martin Luther King Jr. advocated a rejection of those Parties and candidates that were not in the best interests of his people. Lieberman's support of the death penalty.
Election 2000 - A religious "Cold War" of words?
AANews, 22 August 2000. The religious tone of the White House race is pervasive and unabated, as candidates from both parties continue to drape themselves in the rhetorical mantle of "values," morality and religion.
Why George W. Bush's policies and Al Gore's policies are basically the same
By Jerry Gordon, 23 August 2000. While there are differences between Bush and Gore on certain domestic questions, their basic agreement on fundamental issues, regarding jobs, health care, labor's rights, the environment, justice and peace are so harmful to working families and the great majority, that a vote for either Bush or Gore only promotes the interests of Corporate America.
The United States has become insufferable as it has grown all-powerful
By Polly Toynbee, The Guardian, Wednesday 23 August 2000. The rest of the globe watches U.S. elections as powerless spectators and demi-subjects. The two conventions displayed all that is most repugnant and alien in a political system corrupted beyond recognition in the democratic world.
Lieberman blames national woes on "freedom from religion"
AANews, 28 August 2000. Lieberman has provided Democrats with a new political weapon in their effort to "take back god" and seize the rhetorical high ground from Republican. Lieberman continues to push the envelope in a political campaign awash in religious themes and rhetorical devices. Candidates in both parties scramble to establish their religious faith as a credential for public office, and both platforms call for a greater role of religion in the public square, as well as involvement by faith-based groups in the operation of social services.
The Nader factor
By Brad Knickerbocker, Christian Science Monitor, 29 August 2000. Nader's message of environmental protection, social justice, and grass-roots democracy resonates with many in the Northwest - particularly those who see little difference between "compassionate conservative" Republicans, buffing a more centrist image, and the predominant New Democrats, who have shifted their party rightward.
The beat goes on: Lieberman again cites religion; ADL calls for restraint, American Atheists speak out
AANews, 29 August 2000. Candidates on both sides of the political divide continued their effort to appeal to faith-based groups and cite the virtues of religious belief, despite calls for a "cease fire" in what has become a rhetorical war of faith.
Nader: Empower People vs. Elites
The Associated Press, 31 August 2000. Nader's goal is to halt the concentration of that power "more and more in the hands of the few controlling our government." On the issues that matter there is little difference between Democrat Al Gore and Republican George W. Bush. "They are different in a few areas but the rhetoric is more different than the reality."
Crisscrossing Manhattan, Nader Criticizes Corporate Misdeeds
By Jayson Blair, The New York Times, 1 September 2000. Ralph Nader, running for president as the Green Party nominee, railed against big business, crisscrossing Manhattan to condemn environmental pollution, the exploitation of workers and the abuse of taxpayer dollars through "corporate welfare." He also dismissed his opponents as candidates whose similarities (favoring businesses over workers and taking millions from corporate donors) outweighed their differences.
Populism & and corporate welfare
By Tom Barry, The Progressive Response, 8 September 2000. It's time Gore spoke out about corporate greed and corporate control over the political process. It's time that the U.S. government's practice of corporate welfare become an issue for U.S. fair trade, labor, and consumer groups--and for "populist" Al Gore.
Bush underscores need for faith; Gore again hits Hollywood, supports Lieberman on religion-in-politics
AANews, 17 September 2000. Just when you thought the candidates of the two major political parties could not add to the volume of religious rhetoric in the election campaign, both Texas Gov. George W. Bush and Democrat Presidential hopeful Al Gore continued talking about the importance of faith, and a role for sectarian groups in the public square.
Ralph Nader Responds to ColorLines
By Ralph Nader, 5 October 2000. Nader says that after reading the ColorLines article accusing him of downplaying issues of race and racism in his campaign, Nader responds by describing his record on advocating for the rights of people of color: Issues concerning racism have been central to the work I have done in the past, and continue to the present day.
Nader = Clinton on foreign policy
From the Marxist Workers' Group, 5 October 2000. Nader refuses to take any position on critical issues of foreign policy because he is indistinguishable from Buchanan, Bush, Gore or Clinton. The Greens aren't big on pushing themselves as an alternative to Clinton's foreign policy because there is no difference. The Greens in the US use the first Green Party in Germany as its model, and the German Green Party runs the imperialist war machine there.
A Green Perspective on Ralph Nader And Independent Political Action
By Howie Hawkins, 8 October 2000. Nader no stranger to the labor movement, and buiding a labor-environment coalition is a constant theme in his campaign. While Nader's campaign develops independent progressive politics, many still adhere to the lesser evil position. It is hard to find any redeeming liberal or progressive legacy in the Clinton/Gore record. The Gore candidacy might put to question the traditional popular constituency of the Democratic Party.
A campaign without class
By Howard Zinn, 8 October 2000. This country is divided among the rich, the poor, and the nervous in between. Whether Gore or Bush wins, the same class that has always dominated our political and economic systems will be in power. How to bring together the class of have-nots -- a great majority of the country -- into the kind of social movement that in the past has made the people in charge tremble at the prospect of "class warfare" and has gained some measure of justice.
In dispute over RU-486, Bush working to woo Catholic vote. Republicans mobilizing special Catholic task force
In AANews, 9 October 2000. In the year 2000 election campaign, major party hopefuls quote scripture and verse from holy books. Bush adopts Catholic anti-abortion slogan, "culture of life." The Catholic vote and the Democratic Party.
I'm Angry at Ralph Nader's Whimpy Statement
By Stan Heller, 10 October 2000. I'm angry that Buchanan's statement on the Middle East was much better than Nader's! The "peace process" is a fraud to solidify an apartheid system, with Palestinians kept down. Nader is foolishly throwing away a huge opportunity here.
Politics & People; The Biggest Whopper: The Bush Tax Cut
By Albert R. Hunt, Dow Jones, 12 October 2000. The GOP nominee claims his tax measure principally will help the working poor and middle-class Americans. The rich, he says, will get a smaller percentage than they currently do, and the tax plan comfortably fits with projected budget surpluses and his Social Security plans. None of that is true.
Is there any difference between Gore and Bush on the conflict in Palestine?
Interview with the candidates, 13 October 2000, on Middle East policy. Gore: I haven't heard a big difference in [our] last view exchanges; I was one of the few members of my political party to support former President Bush in the Persian Gulf War resolution. Bush: I want [the genocidal Iraqi sanctions] to be tougher.
Reasons not to vote for Bush (Need Help)
15 October 2000. The stand of Gore and Bush on Privatizing Government Services, Minimum Wage, Discrimination, Protecting a woman's right to choose, Protecting Our Environment, Right to organize, Paycheck Deception, Social Security and Pensions, Education, Equal Pay, Health Care, Taxes, Working for our children, Head Start.
Candidates Ignore Poverty in 2000 Elections
By Mark Weisbrot, 15 October 2000. The absolute poverty of American presidential politics is perhaps nowhere more evident than in the politics of poverty. It is not only the poor who have been left behind in the Age of Greed: according to the latest data, from 1986 to 1997 the real income of 90 percent of American families barely grew at all. Gore wants to maintain the illusion that the rising tide of economic expansion has lifted everyone's boat, and Bush -- well, for him the rich still have too little.
Ralph's People Problem
By Laura Flanders, In These Times, 16 October 2000. Nader says he's running for president on the Green Party ticket to reinvigorate U.S. politics. It's about building a people's movement, he says. The only snag: When it comes to people of color, queers, feminists and a whole hunk of today's already pretty invigorated youth movement, Nader and the people find it hard to get along.
Vote Strategically: For Nader
By Manning Marable, Along The Color Line, October 2000. Bush completely ignores the African-American electorate because he knows he'll receive few black votes, probably under 10 percent. Gore can also safely ignore us, because he knows we have nowhere else to go. All too many black elected politicians and Democratic Party officials have become silent partners in the suppression of black electoral political power.
Nader's Curious Lack Of Black Support
By Salim Muwakkil, in the Chicago Tribune, 16 October 2000. The striking lack of racial diversity among Nader supporters despite his progressive positions on economic democracy and social justice. Black leadership is in the pocket of Al Gore because he is part of the Clinton administration that is beloved by many blacks primarily because of his attention to symbolic issues, and most blacks have a vested interest in the fate of the Democratic party.
The Real Choice in 2000
By Dave Steele, in Ithaca Today, 17 October 2000. Everyone in the world deserves the right to vote in our Presidental elections, not just Americans. The President wields unparalleled power over the entire planet and most of the world has no voice in his decisions. Al Gore and George W. Bush agree on an awful lot on policies which, to put it mildly, are not at all good for the world.
Quick on the Trigger. On Foreign Policy, It's No Easy Matter To Make A "Lesser Of Two Evils" Argument For the Gore-Lieberman Ticket
By William D. Hartung, in The Progressive, November 2000 issue (17 October 2000). In the of U.S. foreign and military policy, it's no easy matter to make a "lesser of two evils" argument for the Gore-Lieberman ticket. On many of the issues that progressives care about most, the differences between the two major parties range from subtle to nonexistent.
October Surprise? U.S. Special Forces Hunting Bin-Ladin in Afghanistan?
In Mid-East Realities, 19 October 2000. The attack on Afghanistan could be designed to further Gore's campaign and win Clinton a positive image in history.
Quick on the Trigger On Foreign Policy, It's No Easy Matter To Make A "Lesser Of Two Evils" Argument For The Gore-Lieberman Ticket
By William D. Hartung, in The Progressive, 21 October 2000. Liberal columnists attempt to show that there are significant differences between the two major parties. They then argue that Nader should put aside his quixotic quest. On many of the issues that progressives care about most, the differences between the standard-bearers range from subtle to nonexistent. Look for a Gore and Lieberman Administration to launch air strikes on Washington's designated enemies of the moment in the tradition of Reagan and Clinton.
Voters Are Tuning In, Turning Sour. People express disappointment with Bush, Gore; 'Like a fraternity election'
By Jonathan Weisman, in the Baltimore Sun, 22 October 2000. Many of the nation's voters appear to be eyeing Election Day with disappointment, dissatisfaction and even disgust for two presidential candidates who still have not won their confidence. Votes will be cast without enthusiasm for the man viewed as the less objectionable candidate. "I haven't seen anything addressed that I felt was important; it's more politics as usual."
Cut Out of Prosperity, Cutting Out at the Polls
By Dale Russakoff, The Washington Post, 24 October 2000. Low-income, working-age Americans, the least likely voters in a country with the lowest voter turnout of all western democracies, appear doubly alienated this election year. Not only have they watched the nation's longest economic boom lift seemingly every boat but theirs, but now come the major presidential nominees talking conspicuously past them about tax relief for the middle class and prescription drugs for the elderly.
Forgotten Issues
By Hanna Rosin, in The Washington Post, 26 October 2000. The one fact about America that will define "the shape of the future," is that during the past decade, more immigrants came to the US than at any time. Yet, when the two main candidates talk about the future, the impact of this demographic upheaval rarely comes up.
Contradictions of the Nader Program
By Fred Goldstein, in Workers World, 26 October 2000. Nader's rallies calling for democratic rights inspired great enthusiasm among white youths just coming into the political movement. It will take a great deal of education and wider and deeper political experience for the new generation of activists to grasp the enormous contradictions (over issues) in the Nader campaign.
Clinton, Gore church appearances spark IRS complaint from church-state watchdog group
Americans United for Separation of Church and State press release, 27 October 2000. AU ask the IRS to investigate two churches for possible violations of the federal tax law's ban on church politicking.
Sierra Club Scolds Nader: Calls Ralph's Strategy Ruinous
Sierra Club release, 27 October 2000. Response to a letter from Ralph Nader that attacked a number of environmental leaders for their support of Gore. Nader's letter contained a number of inaccurate and unfair attacks on Gore's environmental record.
Top ten reasons why I'm not voting for Nader
By Gloria Steinem, 28 October 2000. Perhaps there's a reason why Nader's rallies seem so white, middle class, and disproportionately male. Be ethical as if everything we do matters: if we want Gore and not Bush in the White House, we have to vote for Gore and not Bush. Think about the impact of our vote on the weakest among us. Also here a rebuttal to this blast at Nader by Gloria Steinem, by Green Party Lisa Thurman.
Gore = ANTI-CHOICE (tell your pro-Gore friends)
From votenader.com, 29 October 2000. A major reason cited for "why we've got to vote for Gore instead of Nader, to make sure we keep out Bush" is to protect Roe V. Wade. This is an incorrect assessment.
A Missing Campaign Issue: Economic Apartheid
Institute for Public Accuracy, 30 October 2000. The absence of much discussion of the gap between the presumption of universal prosperity and voters' own experience of their lives is a big reason why neither of the major presidential candidates has been able to develop a strong bond with the electorate or retain a lead in the polls.
Bush and Gore on Sovereign Right
A dialog from the Taino-L list, 30 October 2000. Statement by Bush on Native American sovereignty. Criticism that they will continue with the "trust relationship" that means more of the same old colonial paternalistic behavior. Nothing about getting rid of the BIA altogether, and going government to government. It all looks like business as usual.
The Interest Groups
By Matthew Vita and Susan Schmidt, in The Washington Post, 2 November 2000. This year Christian conservative groups have decided to stay out of the limelight, even as they try to step up their grass-roots efforts to increase voter turnout among supporters. They have come to realize that most of the people they are trying to mobilize are pretty squarely in the Republican camp and that the thing that works best are quiet efforts to get these folks out to vote.
African American Leader Wilson Riles, Jr. on Nader/Gore
By Wilson Riles Jr. 1 November 2000. A respected African American leader addresses an open letter to the Jewish community concerning Gloria Steinem's plea that they vote for Gore rather than nature. I have found that the weakest among us are more willing to struggle than the less weak. Lets work for the profound change that is going to mean something to the weakest among us. Let's not just work to keep them in a weak position.
Gore = Anti-Choice
From Gore's Broken Promises Archive, 2 November 2000. Gore's real stance on "pro-choice" broken promises for gay rights; broken promise that "health care should be a right, not a privildege"; scores of deaths due to lax FDA enforcement under Clinton/Gore watch.
As Turnout Falls, Apathy Emerges As Driving Force
By Richard Morin and Claudia Deane, Washington Post, 4 November 2000. The single biggest reason why half of all Americans will not cast ballots on Tuesday is because they are bored by politics and indifferent to the political process, according to new surveys of nonvoters. One in four doesn't participate out of anger with politics and politicians. Today, women may outnumber men within the ranks of the alienated. Article seems to blame the victim.

Labor and progressives and the election of 2000

Labor caves in to Democrats on platform
By James Drew, in Blade, 30 July 2000. The outcome of the platform meeting was another sign of how "New Democrats," who helped move the party to the center after Bill Clinton's victory in 1992, retain tight control over the party's agenda. Free trade has been a fundamental element of our economic success, but the platform's stance on trade won't broaden the party's appeal and could cause apathy among traditional Democrats. If you keep moving the center to the right, you're missing out on representing a lot of people.
Labour Disputes - Los Angeles
12 August 2000. Disputes between labor and big money, and accusations of police paranoia, are combining with the threat posed by thousands of protesters to set the scene for strife and dissension.
Revived Unions Flex Their Muscles in L.A.
The Philadelphia Inquirer, 16 August 2000. The power that labor unions exert in the 2000 campaign season, and the deference being paid here to union members - who make up roughly 30 percent of the elected delegates - and to union money, which accounts for some of the largest contributions to the Democrats' coffers.
Labor's Love for Gore May Be Lost
By David Moberg, Newsday, 17 August 2000. Democratic victory depends on union support, but most moderate-income workers gained relatively little from the Clinton boom, and the gap between the corporate elite and everyone else widened. Even if labor support brings Gore a victory, growing corporate influence in the Democratic Party makes it unlikely he would reward labor with the sound policies that labor wants, are politically popular and that would strengthen the Democratic Party.
"The Democrats Have Lost Me"
By Bruce Mirken, San Francisco Examiner, 24 August 2000. America's survival depends on one major political party standing up for ordinary working people, the poor and those who face discrimination. Democratic Party hacks are near panic over the possibility that many progressive voters, including gays and lesbians, will support Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader.
Nader visit aims to get labor vote
By David Postman, Seattle Times, 25 August 2000. "How many years of dissembling and lies and betrayals do the Democrats have to deliver to organized labor before labor says `enough is enough?" Nader asked. Democrats call Nader a spoiler. Most major labor organizations have endorsed Gore, nationally and locally. He may get some labor support on an individual basis.
AFL-CIO leader pledges support for Gore campaign
By Ann McFeatters, The Blade, 30 August 30 2000. John Sweeney estimates his organization will spend between $40 million and $45 million this election to try to get Al Gore elected, win back the House for Democrats, and influence legislation.
The Real Strength of the Economy; A labor agenda for workers
By Ralph Nader, San Francisco Bay Guardian, 1 September 2000. There is a critical need for the labor movement and progressives to once again pick up the battle against the restrictive anti-labor provisions of Taft Hartley. There is a need to adopt labor laws which end the tilt toward employers and provide a fair opportunity for workers to organize without intimidation.
'Working-Class' Majority Needs a Hero
By Michael Zweig, Newsday, 1 September 2000. There is class warfare in this country. The problem is, only one class seems to know it - the class that has been winning for the last three decades. The working class takes it in the neck while the capitalist class goes to the bank. If we understand class as a question of power rather than income or lifestyle, we see that America is not a "middle-class society."
US labor movement will support Gore
Agence France Presse, 3 September 2000. US labor unions, want to use their still decisive influence to help Democratic presidential nominee Al Gore win the White House. Closing his eyes on the free-trade ideology of Gore and his running mate Joseph Lieberman, AFL-CIO President John Sweeney said he was "very enthusiastic about the whole ticket."
Labor holds key to future for Gore, his party in Nov.
By David Goldstein, The Enquirer, 4 September 2000. Like clockwork, labor leaders tell their rank and file every two years that the campaign before them represents "the most important election in their lifetime." Organized labor has been a cornerstone of the Democratic base since the New Deal days of the 1930s. And these days, when union members vote, Democrats win.
Nader's Politics Of the Disconnect
By Dana Milbank, Washington Post, 5 September 2000. Nader's issues reflect "white, middle-class interests," not gay, nonwhite or youth concerns. He speaks to the white middle class. Nader is failing to rally the far left for the same reason Gore failed. "The left has become heavily concentrated on identity politics--gender, race and homophobia," Nader says. "It's devolved itself into grievances. Slights are magnified, and they tend to implode on themselves."
Union Families And the Upcoming Election
Reuters/Zogby, 6 September 2000. In a recent national Zogby poll of 1,004 likely voters, 183 said they, themselves or someone in their family is a union member. Among these likely voting union families, Gore is the choice of 55.3%. One in four union families choose George W. Bush, while 9.2% favor Green Party candidate Ralph Nader.
The Greening of America
By John Neumaier, in the Daily Freeman (Kingston, N.Y.), 1 October 2000. The presidential candidate who poses the strongest challenge to the two-party system is Ralph Nader of the Green Party. Left-leaning voters in the main are divided between Gore and Nader, and the latter is better on the issues. Though few expect Nader to win, what motivates many Nader supporters is their determination to challenge the stultifying monopoly of the two-party system.
Unions push turnout in key states for Gore
In USA Today 30 October 2000. Business interests outspent the AFL-CIO 11-to-1 in 1998, yet labor made a difference in races all over the country. This year an even greater effort.

"He who has the gold, rules"

US Elections: Corporations Buy Access
By Douglas Turner, in Buffalo News, 17 July 2000. In all, corporate America is ginning up nearly $42 million to help the two political parties pay for their conventions and purchase influence, no matter who wins. The last GOP convention where there was any real indecision about the nominee was in 1952. The last Democratic convention of the type was in 1960.
Media coverage overshadows demonstrators' goals
By Michael Kozart, Daily Bruin, (Los Angeles) 21 August 2000. The protesters raised issues all but banished from the platforms of the two-party system, but when it came to the media, these issues were nowhere to be found. The Los Angeles demonstration was reduced by the media to a mindless confrontation of people versus police.There is a corporate machine behind the news, and behind the convention itself. It is all about the money, and money is made from action films.
The money, media, and liberal-left role in plutocratic elections
By Edward S. Herman, 13 September 2000. As part of the normalization process the media argue that the two candidates on the take offer adequate options, have sufficient and important differences, so that nobody else even needs to be heard by the public. I feel that we will lose if Gore-Lieberman OR Bush-Cheney win. And if Gore-Lieberman do win, and Al From and the more-pro-business-than-thou crowd of the DNC consolidate their position in the Democratic Party, where is political change supposed to come from in the future?
Political Groups Change Status to Avoid Disclosure
By Susan Schmidt, Washington Post, 15 September 2000. Political groups that want to keep their finances secret are changing their tax status in order to avoid having to reveal their donors and spending, making an end-run around a new law intended to crack down on anonymous political activity. GOP election lawyer says his firm's 527 clients are converting to nonprofit status in droves to avoid the new disclosure rules.
Withering Democracy
By Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman, in "Focus on the Corporation,", 27 September 2000. For all but the ideologically committed or deluded few who believe corporations and their executives make contributions out of a sense of civic obligation, there can be little doubt that the U.S. campaign finance system is fundamentally corrupt, and corrupting.
Reject fear and loathing on Gore's campaign trail
By John Stauber, 26 October 2000. A well-organized campaign of fear and loathing is attempting to frighten people from voting their own consciences. Democratic big business lobbyist Toby Moffett is one of the so-called progressives coordinating the effort to attack Nader and his supporters.
'Stealth PACs' Report Campaign Financing
By John Mintz and Susan Schmidt, The Washington Post, 1 November 2000. A few of the nuggets buried in the first detailed filings under a new law aimed at forcing previously secret organizations to disclose their donors and spending. Nobody thought this law would be the final solution to the problems of unreported political spending, but the 527s were so abusive that just disrupting those arrangements had some utility.

The candidates

Taking A Long Hard Look At Ralph Nader
By Cedric Muhammad, BlacklElectorate, 17 July 2000. Instead of looking at American politics in terms of a narrow-minded Democrat-Republican dichotomy, Blacks should look at politics in terms of their own best interests. Such a strategy will find plenty in the Democratic Party worthy of support but it also will reveal plenty to be disgusted about.
Quote of the Day: Katha Pollitt
If working on Nader's campaign is the best way progressives can spend the next eight months, it's time to hire a hearse and lie down in it.
George W. Bush: The Illusion of Inclusion
By Manning Marable, July 2000. The theatrical production called the Republican National Convention resonated with Bush's message of racial inclusion. For four days, the Republicans paraded before the television camera a near-endless series of black and brown performers. It was truly a breathtaking exercise in hypocrisy. The basic Republican strategy has been to fragment the hold the Democratic Party has on the African-American electorate.
Dick Cheney is relying on our cultural amnesia to wipe away his record on South Africa
By Joe Conason, in Salon, 1 August 2000. "Whitewashing" is the only word to describe the weak explanations offered by Dick Cheney about his votes on South Africa during the apartheid era. He is relying on our customary national amnesia to wave away the questions raised by his vice presidential nomination.
Cheney's Multi-Million Dollar Revolving Door
By Robert Bryce, in Mother Jones 2 August 2000. As Bush Sr.'s secretary of defense, Dick Cheney steered millions of dollars in government business to a private military contractor -- whose parent company just happened to give him a high-paying job after he left the government.
GW Bush, Jesus and the Manhattan Institute
By Robert Lederman, 8 August 2000. George Bush credits the Manhattan Institute with inventing his entire "compassionate conservative" platform and persona. The link between having faith-based organizations assume public responsibilities and Nazi objectives, and the association of the Manhattan Institute with Nazi immigrants.
Buchanan Accepts a Disputed Reform Nomination
By Thomas B. Edsall, The Washington Post, 13 August 2000. He promises to lead a "party that will defend America's history, heritage and heroes against the Visigoths and Vandals of multiculturalism."
Gore gives America a stark choice
By Ed Vulliamy, in the Observer (London), 20 August 2000. Gore's acceptance speech was a high-risk strategy, which enlivens the struggle against Bush. This now becomes - issue for issue, brick by brick - the most politically polarised election since Ronald Reagan's. Gore was forced into his position by a miasma of personal and political relationships. Gore and Clinton compared.
Why I'm Voting for Ralph
By Robert W. McChesney, In these Times, 21 August 2000. Over the past few months, no one has aroused progressive political interest more than Ralph Nader, who suddenly has invigorated the most tedious and numbing presidential race imaginable.
Why Nader, why now?
By Chuck Idelson, 26 August 2000. Whether to once again line up behind the Democratic Party's Presidential candidate us usually an academic exercise, but this year is clearly different. Nader's campaign is the most serious, broad-based, third party challenge from the left in a Presidential race in over half a century.
Nader's Veep: Running To Help Poor
By Patrick Howe, Associated Press, 29 August 2000. Ralph Nader's vice presidential running mate, Winona LaDuke, is an Ojibwe author, activist and farmer from Minnesota.
Nader calls for single-payer health care system
Nader 2000 General Committee press release, 29 August 2000. Ralph Nader calls for a universal health care system - with public funding, private delivery, and controls against waste, profiteering and malpractice, which would be similar to the single-payer system in Canada.
Lingering Question: Is Dick Cheney Guilty Of War Crimes Against Iraqis?
By Robert Jensen, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 5 September 2000. Much criticism of Dick Cheney's business record -- the propriety of his stock options, his role in getting government contracts, and whether or not he earned the millions he was paid. We also heard much about some of Cheney's less compassionate conservative votes in Congress against gun control, Head Start and Nelson Mandela.
The Nader-bashing begins, but he deserves to be heard
The Blade (Toledo, Ohio), 12 September 2000. The guardians of reality at the New York Times Corp. and other media conglomerates are sharpening their knives to cut Ralph Nader and the Green Party down to size. Somewhere along the way, Nader, the practical radical disappeared and his theme seems to be not consumer protection but general hostility toward corporations, warns Paul Krugman of the New York Times.
Ralph Nader is so fed up with corrupt beltway politics that he is willing to sacrifice Al Gore
By Charles M. Young, Rolling Stone Magazine, 14 September 2000. An interview with Nader by Rolling Stone Magazine.
Interview With Winona LaDuke
In These Times, 2 October 2000. In these Times interviews the vice-presidential candidate.
Cheney, Lieberman Play Games With Numbers
By Glenn Kessler, The Washington Post 6 October 2000. Both Joe Lieberman and Richard Cheney tend to distort the facts. [Interesting, in a year when the few who plan to vote will mostly based their vote on the good character of the candidates].
Buchanan pans Columbus Day parade protesters
By Michael P, October 9, 2000. Buchanan's off-the-wall hostility to Native Americans.
Trust or hustle: Wall St Journal on Bush
By David E. Scheim, 16 October 2000. The Bush family financial record. The record called a "never-ending hustle".
Protecting Bush-Cheney
By Sam Parry, in ConsortiumNews.com, 16 October 2000. The national news media have altered the course of Campaign 2000 by applying two different standards for judging how George W. Bush and Dick Cheney handle the truth versus how Vice President Al Gore does.
Socialist Party Candidate on the Mid-East Crisis
22 October 2000. Presidential candidate for Socialist Party discusses the Middle East situation, in which the two sides are morally equated: "Both sides have behaved as if in a tribal battle."
Weakening the wall: Al Gore grovels for votes with Promise Keeper T.D. Jakes
In AANews, 23 October 2000. Al Gore panders after what many consider to be a cult leader. It was typical of the saturation of religious rhetoric, themes and voter-block appeals which have characterized the year 2000 election contest.
Will the 'Slow' Candidate Win the Big Race?
By Howard Kurtz, Washington Post, October 26, 2000. Some left-leaning journalists are flat-out calling George W. Bush dumb and blaming the press for not persuading the country of his utter unsuitability. Even commentators who also criticize Vice President Gore have focused on Bush's candlepower, or lack thereof.
A little background on that hate crimes bill
From John - THE LIST, in Star Telegram, 30 October 2000. Bush's killing of the Texas hate crimes bill. Bush's political problem was that he was about to run for the nomination of a party in which Christian-right voters make up one-third of the Republican primary vote. He could not afford to be associated with a bill that could be interpreted as giving special rights to gays.
A closer look at GW Bush
By Mark Graffis, 1 November 2000. If you look at George W. Bush's and Al Gore's resumes as one would when considering someone for a very high level office, you will find that Al Gore is 100 times more qualified. George W. Bush has no more than 12 months experience in a gubernatorial office that is very constitutionally weak.
Dead Serious: Ads and Calls Go for Jugular
By Howard Kurtz, The Washington Post, 2 November 2000. The low tactics of the parties as we get down to the wire. Attempting to tie a candidate to a horrendous crime is a high-stakes gamble, often done through low-profile phone banks, that invariably produces charges of desperation. The exploitation of tragedy has been an advertising staple since Bush's father turned Willie Horton into a household name in 1988.
Questions which Mr Bush left unanswered
By Paul Wolvekamp, 2 November 2000. Former President George Bush's interest in the gold concession in the north-east of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Question whether presidential candidate George W. Bush has personally gained from it and whether the income from it has helped to fund his run for presidency and other electoral campaigns.
Nader's Record
2 November 2000. Ralph Nader is by all accounts a very smart man, his humorless, hair-shirt personality aside. But he's only interested in one issue: the growth of corporate power and its corrupting influence on democracy. He has little interest in, or commitment to, social issues. Ralph Nader may look like a democrat, smell like a populist, and sound like a socialist--but deep down he's a frightened, petit bourgeois moralizer without a political compass, more concerned with his image than the movement he claims to lead: in short, an opportunist, a liberal hack. Before this campaign, he was hostile to labor and to the Greens.
Poll: Voters Satisfied With Presidential Choices
By Claudia Deane and Richard Morin, The Washington Post, 3 November 2000. Despite a steady drumbeat of complaints about candidates being dumb, dull or both, the majority of those who intend to vote say either Bush or Gore would make a good president. Two in three of those who actually vote say it is "strength of the candidate's personal character" that is key to their vote. This article does not examine whether personal character is likely to be only an image created by the media or whether such a criterion subverts the principle of democracy.
Malaysians on Gore: Can't forget, can't forgive
By Brendan Pereira, Malaysia Correspondent, The Straits Times, 3 November 2000. Malaysians cannot forget what US Vice-President Al Gore did the last time he was in Kuala Lumpur, nor can they forgive. Many politicians, newspaper executives and prominent Malaysians are rooting for Republican nominee George W. Bush and hope that his foreign policy will be less intrusive if he is elected in next Tuesday's polls.
Nader Vote May Cast His Name in History
By Scott Martelle, in Los Angeles Times, 3 November 2000. Third-party presidential candidates historically attract little attention and even less voter support. But sometimes, the right candidate riding the right issue can vault a third party to the front of the national political stage. The election is so tight, particularly in states where Nader's support is relatively high, that Nader could turn the electoral table.

Which candidate is the lesser evil?

Lesser Evil?
By Michael Albert, ZNet Commentary, 21 August 2000. The most frequent reply to the lesser evil argument either (1) disputes that Bush is that much worse than Gore, or (2) urges that voting for Nader sends a message to the Democrats that they are missing the boat and need to move left to win wider support. Problems with the pro-Nader and the anti-Nader arguments.
Lesser Evil?
By Michael Albert, ZMag, 23 August 2000. The main problem with the anti-Nader argument is that it assumes that what matters most about an election or an administration is the positions the candidates and their parties want to pursue, rather than what they can get away with.
A voice crying in the wilderness
By Edward Said, in Al-Ahram Weekly, (Egypt) 24-30 August 2000. The choice between Gore and Bush exists but is a relatively trivial and uninteresting one: both are comfortable with the current system. The poor, the disadvantaged, the minorities will have less support from the state thanks to Clinton's neo-liberalism. In Ralph Nader, the Green Party candidate, there is an individual who is much better suited to be president than either of the two main ones who are where they are by inheritance and a huge amount of money rather than real merit.
A Vote for Gore is a Vote for Bush
By Paul Glover, Ithaca Today 27 August 2000. Clinton's presidency should have taught progressive voters that a cute smile can mask bitterly conservative willingness, after elections, to sell out environmentalists, labor, middle-class taxpayers, small businesses, African-Americans, and women. Had progressives begun twenty years ago voting our own platforms rather than fearing greater evils (which we got anyway), then today we'd have a strong electoral challenge.
Reed on Nader
Adolph Reed, 2 September 2000. It's the quadrennial presidential charade. Progressives debate about which of the two major evils is really lesser, and it comes down to whether to support the inadequate Democratic nominee or some more or less quixotic third party initiative. This has characterized every presidential election season since 1980, when John Anderson ran as a mass media-generated hologram spouting empty slogans and projecting gravitas without specific content. We have internalized our defeat and accommodated perversely to our marginalization in American politics.
Maximizing Ralph: The Free Nader Vote
By Don Hazen, AlterNet, 10 October 2000. No issue has dominated liberal and progressive political debate more this election cycle than the Gore/Nader dilemma. Must we choose between idealism and pragmatism? Given the nature of our winner-take-all, corporate-money-drenched democracy, many believe that voting isn't the best way to create social progress, but is only tactical.
Protecting Bush-Cheney
By Sam Parry, www.consortiumnews.com, 16 October 2000. The national news media have altered the course of Campaign 2000 by applying two different standards for judging how Bush and Cheney handle the truth versus how Gore does.
Don't Vote Lesser Evil Politics!
By Rabbi Michael Lerner, Tikkun Magazine, September/October 2000 (18 October 2000). With the New York Times' liberal establishment bashing any liberals who are choosing to give Nader's candidacy serious consideration, Tikkun Magazine thought it might be worthwhile to consider the logic of might be described as "lesser evillism" in politics.
"You Always Hurt The Ones You Love" The Real Threat is Al Gore, Not Ralph Nader
By Jeffrey St. Clair, in CounterPunch, 19 October 2000. The neo-liberals' warning to progressives and Leftists that a vote for Ralph Nader is the surest way to elect George W. Bush? It's a cynical ploy; yet, millions have fallen for it, trembling out of fear. But there's so much more to fear from Gore than Bush.
Halliburton Corporation's Brown and Root is one of the major components of the Bush-Cheney drug empire
By Michael C. Ruppert, the Wilderness Publications, 24 October 2000. The success of Richard Cheney at leading Halliburton, Inc. to a "pig-out" on federal contracts and taxpayer-insured loans. Report suggests drug money played a role in the successes achieved by Halliburton under Cheney's tenure.
Why I Won't Change My Vote: a Native American view
By Noquisi (Day Starr), 24 October 2000. In Native Ameican tradition, we elect those who will represent us, and neither Bush nor Gore have the good of the people in their heart, just the good of the corporations. What kind of future are we creating for the future generation if we continue to vote the lesser of two evils?
The Lesser of Two Evils or The Greatest Common Good
By Jonah Nadir Omowale, 27 October 2000. Now, because it looks like Gore's blunders during those debates and throughout this campaign are catching up to him, he and the media that backs him are attacking Ralph Nader. But they aren't addressing the issues that inspired Nader to run in the first place.
Some Black Voters View Gore as the Lesser of Two Evils
By Terry M. Neal, the Washington Post, October 29, 2000. Neither candidate has spent much time addressing issues of particular concern to African Americans. The message they get from Democratic leaders was not so much that Gore was great on the issues but that Bush was horrible and that a vote for Nadar was tantamount to a vote for Bush.
Nader Painted as Spoiler by Mainstream Green Groups
By Brian Hansen, ENS, 30 October 2000. The Sierra Club lashes back at Ralph Nader, who last week attacked mainstream environmental groups for what he called their "servile mentality" in supporting the "lesser of two evils" in this year's presidential race.
An Open Letter to Gore From Moore
By Mike Moore, 31 October 2000. When it begins to look as though Gore's victory not sure, those who support the status quo accuse Nader's people of being traitors. It's the fault of Gore and Democrats that there is a possibility of Bush winning, not of Nader's supporters. You missed an opportunity to do the right thing and now you ask us to pull you out of your mistake and prevent the reign of terror a Bush presidency will bring us.
Labor and the Lesser of Two Evils
By Haines Brown, 1 November 2000. The difference between the working class vote for Lesser Evil and for a Friend of Labor. How should the working class approach this election?
Labor and the Lesser of Two Evils
1 November 2000. A comment in response to the previous essay of the same name. For the first time in years, there is a viable alternative, a chance for blacks and labour to take a stand and act independently.
German Green Objects to Nader
1 November 2000. A founder of the Green Party in southern Germany is warning Americans about the danger of applying the Green political experience in Germany to the United States. America's winner-take-all system has made Ralph Nader's potential contribution to the election of Bush an "alarming" threat to the principles of Greens in Europe and the United States,
The Nader Dilemma
By D. A. Clarke, written for Feminists for Nader, 2 November 2000. Ralph Nader and the lesser evil argument from a feminist perspective. Many progressives face a crisis of conscience over their vote this November.
Nader Urged To Yield Field to Gore
By Eun-Kyung Kim, Associated Press, 2 November 2000. Attacks against the Green Party presidential candidate are mounting from those once closely aligned with his progressive views but now angered by his refusal to step aside in closely contested states where a vote for Nader could mean a victory for Republican George W. Bush.
Ain't Fallin' For That One Again
By Michael Moore, 2 November 2000. The pundits and the Democrats tell us that a vote for Nader is a vote for Bush because all Ralph will end up doing is siphoning off votes that would have gone to Gore. Well, I've fallen for this before and I ain't fallin' for it again. In fact, Based on the record of abortion rights, George W. Bush, if elected, will never to anything to make abortion illegal, but under the Clinton/Gore watch, there was a "right" to an abortion, but you couldn't actually get one.
For what social forces does Ralph Nader speak?
5 November 2000. A citation of a good workers' analysis of Nader's true place in the scheme of things, and a quote from Karl Marx on working-class independent politics.

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