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Foley Offers Compromise On Line-Item-Veto Debate

By CompiledMax Boot / November 16, 1992



BOSTON

AS governor of Arkansas, Bill Clinton had the right to strike out individual items of spending bills - a line-item veto, reports Monitor staff writer Linda Feldmann. As president, he won't get that, says House Speaker Thomas Foley (D) of Washington. But Mr. Foley, speaking at a Monitor breakfast on Friday, said Congress is ready to give Mr. Clinton the next best thing: a line-item "recision."

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The president would still have the right to strike out any item in a spending bill, but Congress would need only a simple majority to reinstate it, rather than two-thirds, as with a line-item veto. "The president ought to be able to make the Congress put it up on the screen alone, as the mohair subsidy, yes or no," Foley said, citing one infamous example of "pork." "But if the Congress, in its representational capacity of the American people, votes a majority in both houses for the grand mohair subsidy, that'll be on our head. And the president shouldn't be able to frustrate the majority rule of a parliament by one-third of one body." A Boston-Little Rock axis?

Harvard University is not quite at the center of the new Democratic administration - as it probably would have been if Michael Dukakis had been elected president in 1988. But Harvard's Kennedy School of Government is still producing some top Democratic appointees, reports Monitor staff writer Elizabeth Ross.

Last week, Clinton appointed Robert Reich, who teaches public policy at the Kennedy School, as director of his economic-policy transition team. Mr. Reich, who is not a trained economist, is known for his views on using government as an active participant in shaping the economy. He has known the president-elect since the late 1960s, when they were both Rhodes Scholars at Oxford.

"People know of Bob as an economic thinker but he is also a very charismatic leader and a very talented organizer," gushes John Donahue, an associate professor of public policy at the Kennedy School. Wait till Bush hears this

As usual, the press has come in for its share of abuse from the losing presidential campaign - which in 1992 was President Bush's. The press, as always, denies all charges of bias. But according to an independent analysis of stories and headlines about the presidential debates, the reporting was riddled with biased writing - with most of it being pro-Clinton and anti-Bush.

News articles before and after the three debates, held in September, gave Clinton favorable treatment 48.4 percent of the time compared to 29.7 percent for Ross Perot, and 21.9 percent for President Bush, says the survey conducted by the NEXIS division of Meade Data Central, a database of articles from a wide variety of publications, and PR Data Systems, which studies the effectiveness of public-relations campaigns.

Thirteen news organizations were surveyed for the study, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Christian Science Monitor. Bargains for Democrats - but not in Washington

Arkansans looking for Washington-area real estate need look no further than their local newspaper. But they better brace themselves for sticker shock.

Classified ads for Washington-area residences have been popping up in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette since a few days after Clinton won the presidential race. "35 min. to the White House," boasted one recent ad for a five-bedroom home in Potomac, Md.

The price could be an eye-opener to many Arkansans thinking of moving to Washington with their governor-turned-president-elect. The Potomac home's asking price was $565,000. A four-bedroom home in Arkansas advertised for sale just a few inches away on the classified page had an asking price of $75,000.

Democrats eagerly looking for bargains should turn instead to the Ashland, Ore., Daily Tidings, reports Monitor staff writer Brad Knickerbocker. One of the newspaper's classified advertisements reads: "1977 JEEP CHEROKEE 4WD. A/C. Many improvements. Democrats $2,700. Republicans $3,500. Call 482-5376 after 5 p.m."