May 14, 2004

''He could have chosen an easy life -- some people who went to Yale did," Clark said of Kerry and of Yale graduate Bush at the fund-raiser in Little Rock Wednesday night, a jab he repeated at the two other events.

NOTE TO SEN. JOHN F. KERRY (D-MEKONG DELTA): Do it,
John. Do it. Run with Wesley Clark (D-NATO)...Take
Arkansas, Ohio and more...BTW, after JFK campaigned
with Wes Clark in Little Rock, he flew back to D.C.
and quietly and unexpectedly slipped into the secure
location at the Capitol and viewed the prisoner abuses
images from Iraq. He made no comment...Do it, John,
run with Wes Clark and make your announcement at the
Vietnam Veterans Memorial...The first Presidential
ticket with two Vietnam veterans, the first
Presidential ticket with any Vietnam veteran, with a
"band of brothers" marching with it, to rescue a
younger generation from its catastrophic blunder: the
wrong war at the wrong time in the wrong place...We
won't second-guess you, but do it...

Boston Globe: ''He could have chosen an easy life -- some people who went to Yale did," Clark said of Kerry and of Yale graduate Bush at the fund-raiser in Little Rock Wednesday night, a jab he repeated at the two other events. ''He could have pulled on those cowboy boots and put his feet up on the desk. But John Kerry didn't do that. John Kerry made decisions in his life that reflect who he is, and that shaped him and his values."
Campaign aides would not describe the two men's
private conversations, yet some signs of a Kerry-Clark
fit were clearly evident. Both men are combat
veterans, modest about their own heroism in public
speeches, and they enjoy assailing Bush and Vice
President Dick Cheney for ''wrapping themselves in the
flag," in Kerry's words, when neither Republican
served in Vietnam.

Support Our Troops, Show Up for Democracy in 2004:
Defeat Bush (again!)


http://www.boston.com/news/politics/president/articles/2004/05/14/in_arkansas_kerry_assails_bush_on_health_care/


In Arkansas, Kerry assails Bush on health care
Clark's help is viewed as hint at a ticket
By Patrick Healy, Globe Staff | May 14, 2004

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Senator John F. Kerry joined
yesterday with doctors and veterans in accusing
President Bush of shortchanging the nation's medical
care system, as the presumptive Democratic nominee
campaigned in Arkansas, a Southern state that Bush won
four years ago.

Kerry also set off a burst of chatter in the state's
capital that he may look to the South for a running
mate by campaigning yesterday and Wednesday evening
alongside native son Wesley K. Clark, who is now being
considered by the Kerry camp for a possible spot on
the ticket. The retired four-star general huddled with
Kerry and campaign chairwoman Jeanne Shaheen for an
hour yesterday.

In remarks at the Donald W. Reynolds Center on Aging,
part of the University of Arkansas for Medical
Sciences, the presumptive Democratic nominee made an
appeal to Southerners that Republican priorities in
Washington were not improving medical care or the
economic lot of average Americans and military
families.

''We have the greatest health care in the world, the
best, but we also have a system in crisis," Kerry told
150 medical professionals and veterans. ''It's an
incredible contradiction. We deserve leadership that
doesn't just kind of stiff-arm it, pretend it's not
there, and shove it off to the side. We deserve
leadership that wants to sit with doctors, to sit with
healthcare delivery businesses, and bring people to
the table and say, ''How do we do this smart?"'

Hershel Gober, a former secretary for veterans'
affairs in the Clinton administration, expressed
bitterness about the Bush presidency and also the
plight of those elderly and veterans who have had
trouble getting medical care.

''I can't even walk by the White House now -- I turn
my head the other way -- because Al Gore should be
there. We're not going to let them steal this one,
John," Gober said, a reference to the bitterly
contested 2000 election.

Steve Schmidt, a Bush campaign spokesman, charged in
response that Kerry and his allies were playing
politics with veterans' benefits. He asserted that
federal funding for veterans programs had increased by
40 percent under Bush.

Clark served as the warm-up act for Kerry at a rally,
a town hall forum, and a $500,000 fund-raiser,
ridiculing President Bush as a laconic good-old-boy,
while praising Kerry's two tours of duty in Vietnam
and 25 years of public service. It was the first
extended, up-close look Kerry has had of the way Clark
carries himself on the stump, and Kerry laughed and
clapped during Clark's introductory remarks.

''He could have chosen an easy life -- some people who
went to Yale did," Clark said of Kerry and of Yale
graduate Bush at the fund-raiser in Little Rock
Wednesday night, a jab he repeated at the two other
events. ''He could have pulled on those cowboy boots
and put his feet up on the desk. But John Kerry didn't
do that. John Kerry made decisions in his life that
reflect who he is, and that shaped him and his
values."

Campaign aides would not describe the two men's
private conversations, yet some signs of a Kerry-Clark
fit were clearly evident. Both men are combat
veterans, modest about their own heroism in public
speeches, and they enjoy assailing Bush and Vice
President Dick Cheney for ''wrapping themselves in the
flag," in Kerry's words, when neither Republican
served in Vietnam. Clark, who is a head shorter than
Kerry, does not emit the kind of magnetism that might
upstage him, and Clark's unadorned speaking style does
not invite unfavorable comparisons with Kerry.

''It's hard not to see this as an audition for Wes
Clark," said Ann Burton Portis, an Arkansas cotton
farmer and former Clark for President supporter who
attended the fund-raiser. ''But I think Clark would
prefer to be in charge of something in his specialty,
like defense or homeland security."

Clark, speaking to reporters on Kerry's campaign plane
yesterday, did not respond directly to most questions
about his relationship with Kerry. Asked how many
times they spoke, Clark repeated his strong support
for the presumptive nominee. Of their campaigning in
Arkansas, Clark said: ''I think when people in the
South meet him, they like him."

The candidate briefly mingled with reporters on board
and took a glancing shot at the Bush campaign. ''I
would rather be where we are, growing, rather than
where they are," Kerry said, making a shrinking motion
with his hands in an apparent reference to public
opinion polls.

Kerry, who usually says ''no comment" when asked about
a running mate, was a mite more open when an audience
member asked if he would consider putting Clark on the
ticket.

''Do you know this guy?" Kerry said to Clark, sitting
on a stool a few feet away.

''No, but that's my cousin up there," Clark replied.

''Folks, I have huge respect for General Clark, I
think all of you know that. We're becoming great
friends in this process," Kerry said, before declining
to answer the man's question.

After campaigning in Arkansas, Kerry returned to
Washington, D.C., last night and spent 50 minutes in a
secure room in the US Capitol looking at images of
abuse of Iraqi prisoners that have been made public.
Kerry did not comment, as he left the building, but
nodded when asked by reporters if he was outraged.

Patrick Healy can be reached at phealy@globe.com.


Copyright 2004 The New York Times Company

http://www.boston.com/news/politics/president/articles/2004/05/14/in_arkansas_kerry_assails_bush_on_health_care/

THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING


In Arkansas, Kerry assails Bush on health care
Clark's help is viewed as hint at a ticket
By Patrick Healy, Globe Staff | May 14, 2004

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Senator John F. Kerry joined
yesterday with doctors and veterans in accusing
President Bush of shortchanging the nation's medical
care system, as the presumptive Democratic nominee
campaigned in Arkansas, a Southern state that Bush won
four years ago.

Kerry also set off a burst of chatter in the state's
capital that he may look to the South for a running
mate by campaigning yesterday and Wednesday evening
alongside native son Wesley K. Clark, who is now being
considered by the Kerry camp for a possible spot on
the ticket. The retired four-star general huddled with
Kerry and campaign chairwoman Jeanne Shaheen for an
hour yesterday.

In remarks at the Donald W. Reynolds Center on Aging,
part of the University of Arkansas for Medical
Sciences, the presumptive Democratic nominee made an
appeal to Southerners that Republican priorities in
Washington were not improving medical care or the
economic lot of average Americans and military
families.

''We have the greatest health care in the world, the
best, but we also have a system in crisis," Kerry told
150 medical professionals and veterans. ''It's an
incredible contradiction. We deserve leadership that
doesn't just kind of stiff-arm it, pretend it's not
there, and shove it off to the side. We deserve
leadership that wants to sit with doctors, to sit with
healthcare delivery businesses, and bring people to
the table and say, ''How do we do this smart?"'

Hershel Gober, a former secretary for veterans'
affairs in the Clinton administration, expressed
bitterness about the Bush presidency and also the
plight of those elderly and veterans who have had
trouble getting medical care.

''I can't even walk by the White House now -- I turn
my head the other way -- because Al Gore should be
there. We're not going to let them steal this one,
John," Gober said, a reference to the bitterly
contested 2000 election.

Steve Schmidt, a Bush campaign spokesman, charged in
response that Kerry and his allies were playing
politics with veterans' benefits. He asserted that
federal funding for veterans programs had increased by
40 percent under Bush.

Clark served as the warm-up act for Kerry at a rally,
a town hall forum, and a $500,000 fund-raiser,
ridiculing President Bush as a laconic good-old-boy,
while praising Kerry's two tours of duty in Vietnam
and 25 years of public service. It was the first
extended, up-close look Kerry has had of the way Clark
carries himself on the stump, and Kerry laughed and
clapped during Clark's introductory remarks.

''He could have chosen an easy life -- some people who
went to Yale did," Clark said of Kerry and of Yale
graduate Bush at the fund-raiser in Little Rock
Wednesday night, a jab he repeated at the two other
events. ''He could have pulled on those cowboy boots
and put his feet up on the desk. But John Kerry didn't
do that. John Kerry made decisions in his life that
reflect who he is, and that shaped him and his
values."

Campaign aides would not describe the two men's
private conversations, yet some signs of a Kerry-Clark
fit were clearly evident. Both men are combat
veterans, modest about their own heroism in public
speeches, and they enjoy assailing Bush and Vice
President Dick Cheney for ''wrapping themselves in the
flag," in Kerry's words, when neither Republican
served in Vietnam. Clark, who is a head shorter than
Kerry, does not emit the kind of magnetism that might
upstage him, and Clark's unadorned speaking style does
not invite unfavorable comparisons with Kerry.

''It's hard not to see this as an audition for Wes
Clark," said Ann Burton Portis, an Arkansas cotton
farmer and former Clark for President supporter who
attended the fund-raiser. ''But I think Clark would
prefer to be in charge of something in his specialty,
like defense or homeland security."

Clark, speaking to reporters on Kerry's campaign plane
yesterday, did not respond directly to most questions
about his relationship with Kerry. Asked how many
times they spoke, Clark repeated his strong support
for the presumptive nominee. Of their campaigning in
Arkansas, Clark said: ''I think when people in the
South meet him, they like him."

The candidate briefly mingled with reporters on board
and took a glancing shot at the Bush campaign. ''I
would rather be where we are, growing, rather than
where they are," Kerry said, making a shrinking motion
with his hands in an apparent reference to public
opinion polls.

Kerry, who usually says ''no comment" when asked about
a running mate, was a mite more open when an audience
member asked if he would consider putting Clark on the
ticket.

''Do you know this guy?" Kerry said to Clark, sitting
on a stool a few feet away.

''No, but that's my cousin up there," Clark replied.

''Folks, I have huge respect for General Clark, I
think all of you know that. We're becoming great
friends in this process," Kerry said, before declining
to answer the man's question.

After campaigning in Arkansas, Kerry returned to
Washington, D.C., last night and spent 50 minutes in a
secure room in the US Capitol looking at images of
abuse of Iraqi prisoners that have been made public.
Kerry did not comment, as he left the building, but
nodded when asked by reporters if he was outraged.

Patrick Healy can be reached at phealy@globe.com.


Copyright 2004 The New York Times Company


Posted by richard at May 14, 2004 07:45 PM