The ticket for '88

WE'VE looked over the Democratic list of candidates for 1988, and we're ready with an unqualified endorsement: Washington is far and away the perfect site for the next Democratic National Convention. It would do just fine for the Republicans, too, but right now a 57-member site selection committee of the Democratic Party is gearing up to give Washington a serious look. This is the city that came in a close second behind San Francisco last time. But if keen political and practical sense prevails, Washington should win on the first ballot this September when the committee is expected to announce its choice. That's the strong urging now of three loyal and prominent Democrats -- Mayor Barry and Govs. Baliles and Hughes -- who are eager to host the national party's gathering in ``America's Home Town.''

What better place for the party's celebration? This, after all, is where the party's ticket will want to end up for at least four years. Why not take the whole show right into the backyard of the Republican incumbent? So much of the red, white, and blue hoopla that goes with these things is already in place here: a modern convention center, the best communications facilities, a time zone fit for prime-time television scheduling, mass media en masse, loads of free goings-on for the families, a fancy and efficient subway, plenty of new and old hotels, and three major airports. There is also a strong and experienced police department and a tradition of hospitality. Beyond this there is a city of local people with their own ways as well as a diverse international community.

The capital of the country and the two neighboring states have the red carpet all set to roll out. For a safe, smooth, well-covered convention, Washington is the ticket for '88.

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