Memo To: John McLaughlin, McLaughlin Group
From: Jude Wanniski
Re: Democratic "stretchers"
You devoted a good chunk of your show Sunday to the "lies" being told by a long list of Democratic politicians, from Al Gore on down, relative to the current mess. I had to agree with you on every single point you made, about chads, and uncounted ballots, and the absentee ballots from Seminole county. The Democrats will lie, lie, lie and lie again, as long as they can get away with it. Except they don't call it "lying." Populists that they are, they approach these matters as Mark Twain did in using the term "stretchers." They don't lie. They stretch the truth. Their argument for the last three days that there are 10,000 votes in Palm Beach County that were never counted is the biggest stretch of the year. The ballots were counted twice by machine, but because they were not counted by hand, Vice President Gore led the parade of Democrats in telling the American people these votes WERE NOT COUNTED.
John, you were exactly correct in highlighting this mendacity, as well as the fibs, fudges, stretchers about Seminole County. When I first heard that Republicans in Seminole County were filling in absentee ballot applications for their folks and Democrats were excluded from the process, I figured there was something very, very fishy here, and it could mean the Republicans had been playing fast and loose with their responsibilities. I followed this issue closely, discovering the reason the Republicans were involved and the Democrats were not, is that ONLY the GOP ballot applications had the printed error. If the Seminole officials had not permitted folks to volunteer to write in the numbers required, before they were sent out, the ballots would have been invalid!! Mr. Gore knows this and so do all the other Democrats down the line, including former New York Governor Mario Cuomo. Cuomo is jumping up and down about Seminole County, as if the dirty-no-good corrupt Republican ladies who permitted this should be burned at the stake.
This is neither here, nor there, John, but I have to tell you that I have spent half my adult life as a Democrat (1955-1977) and half my life as a Republican (1978-2000) and can report that Democrats, as a party, tell more "stretchers." Republicans tend to be more UPRIGHT, always assuming that the electorate appreciates HONESTY. Well, the electorate appreciates honesty, but good policy always seems to trump all else. As individuals, Democrats and Republicans are equally honest/dishonest as the case may be. It is as partisans that you see the difference. It is my experience that Democrats stretch the truth more often than Republicans because Republicans are in the ascendance. That's all there is to it. If the Democrats were in the ascendance, Republicans would stretch. Remember Joe McCarthy?