Al Gore Shows His Teeth

In Phoenix on Monday, it was a kind and gentle Al Gore at a public school talking about how he'd make education a priority.

But in Iowa on Saturday, reports CBS News Correspondent Phil Jones, Gore escalated his new attack strategy, with his opponent Bill Bradley in the audience. He implied that Bradley was disloyal because as he'd retired from the Senate rather than fight Newt Gingrich.

"Some walked away. I decided to stay and fight," the vice president said.

In the words of a senior Gore campaign official, "Bill Bradley is trying to pass himself off as something he isn't - there is a lot of educating to be done" on Bradley's Senate record.

Gore headquarters, now in Nashville, is also prepared to challenge Bradley's campaign rhetoric on several fronts. The Gore camp is contrasting positions Bradley has taken as a presidential candidate with those he took as a U.S. senator from New Jersey.

On health care, the Gore camp points to this statement by Bradley: "Why don't we have the best health care in the world?"

The Gore campaign claims that while candidate Bradley talks about health care, Sen. Bradley "sat on the bench" during health care reform efforts.

On ethanol, the campaign claims, Sen. Bradley said "the ethanol industry has been living off the public dole long enough." But candidate Bradley, in corn-rich Iowa, flipped. Now he's for ethanol.

The Gore campaign also claims Bradley is "much talk and no action" on race relations. Gore strategists say Sen. Bradley's 18-year record shows he authored "not a single bill specifically addressing race relations."

The Gore camp also says that while candidate Bradley supports campaign finance reform, Sen. Bradley took more than $2 million in corporate PAC money.

The Gore camp calls this educating the public about Bradley's record. The Bradley camp calls it negative campaigning because Gore senses he's losing his political advantage in the race for the White House.

©1999 CBS Worldwide Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

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