Jimmy Carter's loose grip on his party's right wing slipped further as two prominent Democratic conservatives charged he is playing politics with SALT II. Eugene Rostow and Paul Nitze, former ranking members of the defense establishment, announced they prefer Reagan's approach to arms control.
Rostow, undersecretary of state under Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, called Carter's SALT II approach "electoral theater. . . . No one can deny that he is an isolationist, an illusionist about the Soviet Union and many other things, and most uncertain and erratic conductor of the foreign policy orchestra."
Nitze, a member of the SALT negotiating team under Nixon and Navy secretary under Johnson, said SALT II "looms as the cornerstone of the political effort to associate one candidate with war and the other with peace."
Both men are members of the Committee on the Present Danger and join other conservative, defense-minded Democrats who have defected toward the Reagan camp.m
John Anderson may have a post-election party after all . . .
. . . as he speaks for the first time of forming a third political party around his "national unity" campaign. The implication is that there may be a next time for Anderson.
"I will be spending a great deal of time in the post-election period . . . and I will give a great deal of thought," he said Oct. 24, to whether his campaign ought to be "institutionalized in some more formal way."
Bringing oil supertankers into Galveston might help bring home the bacon for Jimmy Carter.
With the Lone Star State's 26 electoral votes up for grabs, the Carter administration recently reversed itself on past opposition to dredging Galveston harbor for deep-draft ships. Even environment objections by most agencies were overruled, and US Army Corps of Engineers permits were issued in August.
So far, this has brought Carter the active support of US Rep. Jack Brooks in Texas, a key state for a Carter re-election. Now the White House is maneuvering in Congress to finalize the financing in the lame-duck November session.
One repercussion: Other states now are battling behind the scenes to get quick action on dredging for their harbors. Yet few oil companies have come forth to make the long-term commitments that would ensure enough business for deeper ports.m
Adding a personal note to a personal campaign, Nancy Reagan took a rare step to the forefront of her husband's campaign.
During the final week of the election drive, Mrs. Reagan on national 60 -second TV spots produced by the Reagan campaign will protest Carter's campaign treatment of her husband.
"I am deeply, deeply offended by the attempts of Mr. Carter to paint my husband as a man he is not all," she says. According to the New York Times, Reagan aides undertook the filming at Mrs. Reagan's own request.
"Stranger in a strange land": A Southern president has presented a Northern press with has presented a Northern press with a major style problem, says former US Attorney General Griffin Bell.
The news media, centered on the East Coast between Washington and Boston, have stumbled over Jimmy Carter's Southern style, Bell said.But they'll get used to it: If Carter is re-elected, "You'll never hear the 'Southern' label used again. We'll have gotten this John F. Kennedy, Catholic-like thing behind us."
"Americans are unaccustomed to Southerners," Bell told the Field Newspaper Syndicate. "If the President had the same background, but was from Connecticut, the American press would be treating him great." Bell supports Carter for re-election, although he resigned as head of the Justice Department last year.
Carter will spend most of his last week on the campaign trail in the industrial North, especially Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, and Michigan.m