Clinton Throws His Coattails To Friendly Democrats

PRESIDENT Clinton is putting his fund-raising abilities to work for friendlier Democratic candidates while urging disillusioned Americans to ``stay with the politics that work.''

Mr. Clinton, trying to minimize Democratic losses in the midterm congressional elections, acknowledged Saturday that many Americans have grown cynical about government. But at a Minneapolis reception for Minnesota Democratic Senate nominee Ann Wynia, he reeled off accomplishments he claimed for the Democrats.

He delivered a similar message at an evening fund-raiser for Senate contender Alan Wheat in Missouri, denouncing Republicans as obstructionists intent on blocking Democratic initiatives.

Clinton made a four-state fund-raising tour last week expected to haul in more than $1 million for Democratic candidates still willing to associate themselves with the president, notwithstanding his low approval ratings.

But even in friendly territory like Minnesota, some Democrats played down the benefits of Clinton coattails, and Republicans predicted his appearance would work to their benefit.

``I doubt he's much of a help, nor does he do any harm, but he helps raise money and that's what we need,'' said Kevin Chandler, a Wynia spokesman.

Joan Baggett, White House political director, told reporters that requests for Clinton to campaign for Democrats have been increasing. By election day, Clinton will have participated in 50 political events for Democratic candidates, Baggett said.

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