Clinton's Contract with America

Nathan Newman newman at
Fri May 24 17:31:38 MDT 1996

Actually, I am getting to like Clinton, if only because it's fun watching
Newt and Dole getting outmaneuvered and shut down.  Clinton gets accused
of being a sellout but:

On welfare, AFDC entitlement legislation still stands with two vetos
by Clinton against Republicans who sought to cut funding and any
standards.  The money hasn't been cut and it's thanks to Clinton.

Medicaid funding still stands dispite Republican attempts to slash

The Earned Income Tax Credit is now funneling tens of billions of dollars
each year to the poorest workers in the country.

Clinton has endorsed full legislation to protect gay rights, ended
discrimination against gays in civilian jobs (including the CIA) and
fought to end it in the military but ended up settling for the "Don't Ask
Don't Tell policy" (and will veto current Defense legislation partly
because it would bring back discrimination at recruitment).

Anyone who criticizes Clinton on the Gay Marriage issue is a
chump/pavlovian job jumping to the strings of the Religious Right.  Six
months ago, knowing Clinton had publicly come out against gay marriage in
1992, the religious right promoted the whole issue as a wedge to piss off
conservative voters and drive a wedge between Clinton and his base.  It's
a non-existent issue in reality until Hawaii's courts even make a
decision.  And if the decision comes down, the anti-gay marriage bill
would probably be unconstitutional anyways.

What is Clinton promoting?  Raising the minimum wage, expanding pensions
for lower-income workers, child care and guaranteed jobs for those getting
off welfare, expanded educational spending and a defense of a whole range
of social spending.  His Justice department is modifying affirmative
action to conform with Supreme Court decisions but just today, they filed
briefs in support of minority-based scholarships and admissions against
the Texas affirmative action ruling.

In recent days, Clinton and Reich have both denounced sweat shops and
called for expanded investigations to shut them down.  They flatly
promised a veto if anti-labor "team" legislation was added to the minimum
wage bill.

And on women's rights, Clinton has expanded family leave and defended
abortion in every way possible, including vetoing the late-term abortion

As opposed to rhetoric (where he does promote a centrist version), his
actions have been solid liberal, even if not as liberal-left as I would
like in all cases.  His worst crimes have been support of NAFTA and the
anti-terrorism bill, but since we would get those plus massive cuts in
Medicaid, welfare, nutrition programs and anti-labor legislation with
Dole, the choice for President is pretty clear.

So Clinton apology given :)


On Fri, 24 May 1996, Louis N Proyect wrote:

> >From dhenwood at Fri May 24 12:05:16 1996
> Date: Fri, 24 May 1996 11:14:04 -0500
> From: Doug Henwood <dhenwood at>
> Reply-To: marxism at jefferson.village.Virginia.EDU
> To:
> Subject: evil of two lessers
> Savor this, Clinton apologists. From Paul Gigot's column in today's (May
> 24) Wall Street Journal (Gigot is quite right-wing, for those who don't
> read him):
> "Lately, Mr. Clinton has been moving so fast to the right that he's beating
> Mr. Dole to the spot. He declared his opposition to same-sex marriage
> before the Kansan could make it an issue. Then, lest Mr. Dole find even an
> inch of running room, the president pre-emptively endorsed a GOP bill to
> allow other states to ignore the Constitution's Full Faith and Credit
> clause and reject Hawaii's looming endorsement of gay marriage. Who needs
> the Christian Coalition when Bill Clinton is around.
> [...]
> [D]on't look for Mr. Clinton actually to defend federal welfare. Instead
> he's taking credit for reforms by GOP governors that are more radical than
> anything his own advisors favor. The official White House line this week is
> that there's no difference between Bob Dole and Bill Clinton on welfare!
> [...]
> [C]onfident liberals might ponder how difficult it would be for Mr. Clinton
> to govern as a liberal after he's campaigned, in essence, for a kinder,
> gentler Contract With America."
> Doug
> --
> Doug Henwood
> Left Business Observer
> 250 W 85 St
> New York NY 10024-3217
> +1-212-874-4020 voice
> +1-212-874-3137 fax
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