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Balanced Fare: We Report, You Deride

Thursday, July 25, 2002

Michael Pine is Dreaming Out Loud

But this nightmare won't end so easily. The estimable Mr. Pine, in an otherwise laudable plea for responsible black leadership, hopes that Al Sharpton's "drug bust" tape will derail Sharpton's Presidential bid in 2004. Time to wake up, Mike. We are talking about Al "Tawana Brawley" Sharpton. His constituency will see right through this transparent set-up by "The Man", as the urban legend grows.

But you are right to worry. The 2004 race for the Democratic Presidential nomination will be "The Tale of Two Als". Sharpton, a witty, telegenic quote machine with a racially divisive message based on slavery reparations, will energize the ethnic component of the Democratic base, and then threaten to keep them home for the general election unless his demands are met. Can the Democrats negotiate with this Al without frightening independent voters?

Meanwhile, Al Gore will be relying on his name recognition, fund raising network, "Rage Against the Machine" populism of 2000, and a record as the most sucessful Democratic vote-getter ever for his 2004 run. With a front loaded Primary schedule, will a sucessful challenger have time to emerge?

I have seem my cat struggling with a hairball, so I have a good idea of what to expect as the Democrats attempt to cough up a candidate in 2004. Worrying about Al Sharpton is just the beginning.

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