|Differences Between the Two Party Platforms|
|Selective tax cuts only for those who spend money the way Gore wants you to spend it.||Tax cuts for all Americans so we can choose how to spend our own money.|
|Oppose a missile defense system. Praise the phony “victory” in Kosovo.||“America must deploy effective missile defenses.” Oppose “social experiments,” coed basic training, and homosexuality in the military.|
|Ratify UN treaties to regulate U.S. behavior, including the UN treaty on “Discrimination Against Women” and the Kyoto Global Warming Treaty.||Oppose putting U.S. troops under U.N. command. Oppose the International Criminal Court.|
|Oppose “private school vouchers.” Support an expensive expansion of federal spending and control. Support preschool “for every child.”||“The role of the federal government must be progressively limited as we return control to parents, teachers and local school boards.”|
|Move our nation closer to universal nationalized health care financed by the taxpayers and managed by the federal government.||Allow all Americans to own their own health insurance, including Medical Savings Accounts.|
|Support a long list of regulations on gun ownership and the purchase of guns, plus a “photo license I.D.” system.||Support “the constitutional right to keep and bear arms.” Oppose gun registration and licensing of gun owners.|
|Support abortion in all circumstances, including partial-birth abortions. Support tax-funded abortions through Medicaid.||Support legal protection for “the fundamental individual right to life” of the unborn baby. Oppose tax funding of abortions.|
|FAMILY & MORALITY|
|“Support the full inclusion of gay and lesbian families” with financial benefits. Punish “hate crimes.” Support ERA. Support Affirmative Action.||Support “marriage as the legal union of one man and one woman.” Oppose giving sexual preference any “special legal protection or standing in law.” Stand with the Boy Scouts.|
|END OF BIG GOVERNMENT?|
|Start many new federal spending programs called “investments” — a word used 53 times in the Platform. Oppose abolishing any programs.||“Downsize this mess and make government do what it is supposed to do.” “Restore the force of the Tenth Amendment.”|
|Excerpts from the 2000 Republican Platform|
|Prosperity with a Purpose
. . . When the average American family has to work more than four months out of every year to fund all levels of government, it’s time to change the tax system, to make it simpler, flatter, and fairer for everyone. . . . Replace the five current tax brackets with four lower ones, . . . doubling the child tax credit to $1,000, . . . eliminating the marriage penalty, . . . ending the death tax. . . .
We support legislation requiring a super-majority vote in both houses of Congress to raise taxes.
Government also has a responsibility to protect personal privacy. . . . Citizens must have the confidence that their personal privacy will be respected in the use of technology by both business and government. That privacy is an essential part of our personal freedom and our family life. . . .
Education and Opportunity
We recognize that under the American constitutional system, education is a state, local, and family responsibility, not a federal obligation. Since over 90 percent of public school funding is state and local, not federal, it is obvious that state and local governments must assume most of the responsibility to improve the schools, and the role of the federal government must be progressively limited as we return control to parents, teacher, and local school boards. . . . The Republican Congress rightly opposed attempts by the Department of Education to establish federal testing that would set the stage for a national curriculum. We believe it’s time to test the Department, and each of its programs, instead. . . .
We defend the option for home schooling and call for vigilant enforcement of laws designed to protect family rights and privacy in education. Children should not be compelled to answer offensive or intrusive questionnaires. We will continue to work for the return of voluntary school prayer. . . .
At many institutions of higher learning, the ideal of academic freedom is threatened by intolerance. Students should not be compelled to support, through mandatory student fees, anyone’s political agenda. . . .
Republicans recognize the importance of having a father and a mother in the home. The two-parent family still provides the best environment of stability, discipline, responsibility, and character. . . .
We renew our call for replacing “family planning” programs for teens with increased funding for abstinence education, which teaches abstinence until marriage as the responsible and expected standard of behavior. . . . We oppose school-based clinics that provide referrals, counseling, and related services for contraception and abortion. . . . We also encourage states to review their divorce laws and to support projects that strengthen marriage. . . .
Renewing Family and Community
We endorse Republican legislation . . . to require schools and libraries to secure their computers against on-line porn and predators if they accept federal subsidies to connect to the Internet. This is not a question of free speech. Kids in a public library should not be victims of filth, and porn addicts should not use library facilities for their addiction. . . . .
We support the First Amendment right of freedom of association and stand united with private organizations, such as the Boy Scouts of America, and support their positions. . . .
We believe rights inhere in individuals, not in groups. We will attain our nation’s goal of equal opportunity without quotas or other forms of preferential treatment. . .
The Supreme Court’s recent decision, prohibiting states from banning partial-birth abortions . . . shocks the conscience of the nation. . . . The unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and we endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. Our purpose is to have legislative and judicial protection of that right against those who perform abortions. We oppose using public revenues for abortion and will not fund organizations which advocate it. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity of innocent human life. . . .
We oppose the non-consensual withholding of care or treatment because of disability, age, or infirmity, just as we oppose euthanasia and assisted suicide. . . .
We defend the constitutional right to keep and bear arms, and we affirm the individual responsibility to safely use and store firearms. . . . self-defense is a basic human right, . . . we oppose federal licensing of law-abiding gun owners and national gun registration as a violation of the Second Amendment and an invasion of privacy of honest citizens. . . .
Another sign of our unity is the role of English as our common language. . . . We support the recognition of English as the nation’s common language. . . .
We welcome all new Americans who have entered lawfully and are prepared to follow our laws and provide for themselves and their families. . . . We oppose the creation of any national ID card. . . . We therefore endorse the recommendations of the U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform: . . . more resources both to border control and to internal operations. Reorganize family unification preferences to give priority to spouses and children, rather than extended family members. Emphasize needed skills in determining eligibility for admission. . . .
We will reopen Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House. . . .
We support legislation prohibiting gambling over the Internet or in student athletics by student athletes . . . .
We affirm the right of public schools, courthouses, and other public buildings to post copies of the Ten Commandments.
Retirement Security and Quality Health Care
The Republican party remains determined to change federal law to give small employers the liberty to band together to purchase group insurance for their employees at reduced rates, . . . we propose an unprecedented tax credit that will enable 27 million individuals and families to purchase the private health insurance that’s right for them. We also support full deductibility of health insurance premiums for the self-employed. . . .
Individuals should be free to manage their own health care needs through Flexible Savings Accounts (FSAs) and Medical Savings Accounts (MSAs). . . . MSAs should be a permanent part of tax law, offered to all workers without restrictions, with both employers and employees allowed to contribute. . . .
Conservation and Preservation
We will safeguard private property rights by enforcing the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment and by providing just compensation whenever private property is needed to achieve a compelling public purpose. . . .
Government for the People
We call for the Legal Services Corporation to return to its original purpose of providing legal aid to the indigent, rather than pursuing political causes and agendas. . . .
Stop the abuses of corporate and labor “soft” money contributions to political parties. Enact “Paycheck Protection,” ensuring that no union member is forced to contribute to anybody’s campaign . . . .
The need for reform extends to the judicial branch . . . Many judges. . . . make up laws, invent new rights, free vicious criminals, and pamper felons in prison. They have arbitrarily overturned state laws enacted by citizen referenda, . . . A Republican Congress . . . will restore the separation of powers, . . . setting terms for federal judges, for example, or using Article III of the Constitution to limit their appellate jurisdiction . . . Governor Bush pledges to name only judges who have demonstrated that they share his conservative beliefs and respect the Constitution. . . .
We respect the design of the Framers of the Constitution that our nation’s capital has a unique status and should remain independent of any individual state. . . .
Principled American Leadership
Sending our military on vague, aimless, and endless missions rapidly saps morale. . . .
We believe the military must no longer be the object of social experiments. We affirm traditional military culture. We affirm that homosexuality is incompatible with military service. . . .
The Republican party created the all-volunteer force and opposes reinstitution of the draft, whether directly or through compulsory national service. We support the advancement of women in the military, support their exemption from ground combat units, and call for implementation of recommendations of the Kassebaum Commission, which unanimously recommended that co-ed basic training be ended. . . .
The administration’s failure to guard America’s nuclear secrets is allowing China to modernize its ballistic missile force, thereby increasing the threat to our country and to our allies. The theft of vital nuclear secrets by China represents one of the greatest security defeats in the history of the United States. . . .
Over two dozen countries have ballistic missiles today. . . . The new Republican president will deploy a national missile defense for reasons of national security; but he will also do so because there is a moral imperative involved: The American people deserve to be protected. It is the president’s constitutional obligation. . . .
International organizations can serve the cause of peace, but they can never serve as a substitute for, or exercise a veto over, principled American leadership. The United Nations was not designed to summon or lead armies in the field and, as a matter of U.S. sovereignty, American troops must never serve under United Nations command. Nor will they be subject to the jurisdiction of an International Criminal Court. . . .
What Al Gore Really Did Invent
Al Gore was the Administration’s point man in charge of the plan developed in early 1996 to put a million aliens on the fast track to citizenship even if they didn’t qualify and even if they had criminal records. Gore was responsible for keeping the pressure on INS to make sure the aliens were naturalized by September 1, the last day to register for the presidential election.
INS Administrator Doris Meissner was at first reluctant to go along with these shenanigans. But she finally acquiesced in Gore’s plan to remove alleged “bureaucratic roadblocks” to speedy naturalization.
The “smoking gun” documentation came to light sort of as an aside in the new book Sellout by David P. Schippers, his own story as chief investigative counsel for the House impeachment of Bill Clinton. Before Schippers was ordered to limit his investigations to the Monica case, he had focused on the politicization of the INS.
Schippers uncovered a memo written early in 1996 from Doug Farbrother of the National Performance Review (NPR) to Bill Clinton reminding the President that he had “asked us to expedite the naturalization of nearly a million legal aliens.” Farbrother set forth the plan “to force some serious ‘reinvention’ on INS” by “appointing one of our proven NPR reinventors as Deputy INS Commissioner” and moving the existing Deputy elsewhere. The National Performance Review is now called Vice President Al Gore’s National Partnership for Reinventing Government, according to its website www.npr.gov. This confirms Gore’s peculiar obsession with reinventing things.
Dr. Elaine Kamarck in Gore’s office responded to Farbrother on March 21, 1996 in a solid-cap memo: “THE PRESIDENT IS SICK OF THIS AND WANTS ACTION. IF NOTHING MOVES TODAY WE’LL HAVE TO TAKE SOME PRETTY DRASTIC MEASURES.”
A March 22 memo to Al Gore from Doug Farbrother then reported that he told INS “to waive stupid rules, move money from one account to another as needed, and recruit and hire people locally instead of through the slow centralized process.” Farbrother added that each city manager in the major cities was to be given “a project budget to spend as needed.” Farbrother’s memo spelled out other details of the plan to circumvent customary procedure: “delegate hiring authority, waive extensive background investigations on new employees, allow the cities ‘overhire authority.'” This carried out the suggestion originally made in a February 15 memo from HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros to Clinton and Gore suggesting the use of “volunteers” from Hispanic action groups to “process” naturalization applications.
In a subsequent fax, Farbrother wrote that he had instructed INS Commissioner Doris Meissner to “get the results the Vice President wants.”
In a memo addressed to Al Gore on March 28, Farbrother restated the goal to “produce a million new citizens before election day.” The game plan was to “blast INS headquarters loose from their grip on the frontline managers” and to “make Doris Meissner delegate broad authority to her field managers” in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, New York and Miami.
A March 29 memo from Farbrother to Elaine Kamarck revealed his concern lest this plan be exposed as “a citizenship/Clinton voter mill.”
This ingenious 1996 “voter mill” paid off big time. An audit by the accounting firm of KPMG Peat Marwick uncovered some of the results. The newly naturalized citizens who were qualified to vote by this Gore project included more than 75,000 who had arrest records when they applied, an additional 115,000 citizens whose fingerprints were unclassifiable for various technical reasons and were never rechecked, and another 61,000 people who were given citizenship without submitting any fingerprints at all.
Federal law requires that an alien’s application for citizenship must be accompanied by a complete set of fingerprints, which must be cleared by the FBI to determine if the applicant has a criminal record.
Schippers sent the FBI a list of 100 of these new citizens who had committed documented heinous crimes prior to naturalization and discovered that 20 percent were arrested for serious crimes after citizenship was granted in 1996. No one knows how many thousands of criminals were granted citizenship whose fingerprints were never checked at all.
Schippers uncovered some of the additional ways that alien applications were processed. INS agents were directed to relax the testing for English, to complete every interview within 20 minutes, and to ensure that all applicants passed the Civics test by continuing to ask questions until they got a sufficient number right, sometimes asking 25 questions to get four or five correct answers.
Crooked politicians have always stuffed the ballot box in traditional ways, but Al Gore must be given credit for one of the most ingenious. Is the same plan in the works for this year’s election?