Dan Rather's Notebook

Veteran CBS Evening News Anchor Dan Rather is taking the pulse of Campaign 2000. His political notebook appears regularly on CBSNews.com.





Nov. 14: However you shuffle and deal the cards, the Democrats lost big in this last election, says Rather. And now the Republicans hold all the high cards in Washington.

Nov. 8: A lot of people predicted a wild and wooly Election Night, reports Rather, but nobody expected anything like this.

Nov. 4: Rather takes a look at the storm of second-guessing likely to hit the loser of the presidential election.

Oct. 17: Al Gore played the aggressive policy wonk. George
W. Bush flashed charm and affability. Both sides were justified in breathing a huge sigh of relief following the final presidential debate, says Rather

Oct. 11: Rather says we can now rest easy knowing that Al Gore and George W. Bush embrace the Golden Rule. And for the most part, Gore and Bush practiced what they preached during their second debate.

Sept. 14: George W. Bush has taken his lumps over the past month. But, says Rather, the GOP nominee is far from out. Bush is neck and neck with Al Gore in most polls and has a solid base of electoral votes in the South and the Rocky Mountain states.

Aug. 16: Al Gore's choice of Joe Lieberman as his running mate seemed inspired. But now, as Rather notes, there's been some grumbling about Lieberman from party and punditry alike.
Aug. 15: Rather turns a veteran TV newsman's eye on the speaking styles of the Clintons and George W. Bush. The man most in need of practice and pointers, says Rather, is Al Gore.

Aug. 14: Bill Clinton is slowly - very slowly - riding into the sunset. Rather doesn't believe Al Gore will hit his stride until the cowpoke from Arkansas disappears over the horizon.

Aug. 9: Al Gore took an important step toward escaping Bill Clinton's shadow by selecting Joe Lieberman as his running mate, says Rather.

Aug. 2: Rather says that some in the Bush camp were reportedly surprised by the adverse reaction to Dick Cheney's conservative voting record. There's also been some grumbling about Cheney's performance so far.

Aug. 1: George W. Bush is going to great lengths to court the political center. That, says Rather, is what the Republicans' Philadephia show is all about: Acting liberal so that moderates won't think they're extremists.

July 31: Political conventions been become thoroughly scripted and choreographed. One result of the meticulous planning is the absence of real news. As Rather notes, never before have so many come so far to cover so little.

July 13: Rather says George W. Bush is showing himself to be a consummate politician. Bush's wooing of groups traditionally ignored by the GOP may just win him the election.

July 5: Rather looks at Al Gore's faltering campaign and then raises some questions about the work of a group of academics who predict a big victory for the vice president in November.

June 27: Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader has emerged as a player in Campaign 2000. Rather says the consumer activist could pose problems for both major parties.

June 21: Neither George W. Bush nor Al Gore has had much to say about the nation with the world's second largest nuclear arsenal. Rather would like to see the presidential hopefuls answer a few important questions about U.S. policy toward Russia.

June 14: The Supreme Court has grown old, with four justices who are more than 65 years of age. Rather says this may provide George W. Bush or Al Gore with the opportunity to leave an enduring mark on the high court.

June 13: The race for the White House may now appear to be George W. Bush's to lose, but Rather says don't count out Al Gore.

June 9: Dan Rather has already handicapped the GOP veepstakes. Now he checks out the Democratic field and advises Al Gore to take a long look at Robert Rubin.

May 31: Dan Rather looks at the vice presidential selection process and handicaps the GOP field.

May 23: We've heard plenty about human rights in the China trade debate. Dan Rather says the meaning of that term often belongs in the eye of the political beholder.

May 20: Mayor Rudy Giuliani is going through an amazing transformation right before our eyes as he discovers that some things in life are more important than politics.

May 17: Rudy Giuliani's turmoil is more of a show than New York's Republicans bargained for.

May 11: Al Gore and George W. Bush are fighting over who'll be the "Education President", but in reality that title has limits.

May 4: Bill Clinton has found a worthy political successor and his name isn't Al Gore.

April 28: Thoughts on an intense time - twenty-five years ago - as the Vietnam War fades into history.

April 18: Ghosts of recent GOP Conventions past may have prompted George W. Bush to meet with gay Republicans.

April 12: George W. Bush isn't whistling Dixie when he says he'll compete for California. Control of the House could turn on the strength of the GOP's showing in the Golden State.

April 5: It's still the economy, stupid: Al Gore's knuckles are as white as any day trader's in the face of the tech sector's latest volatility.

March 28: Mayor Rudy Giuliani has handed Senate rival Hillary Clinton a campaign issue with his mishandling of the latest New York City police shooting of an unarmed black man.

March 22: After a South Pacific vacation, John McCain is back at work in the Senate, tanned, rested and ready. The big question is ... ready for what?

March 14: Using a little Electoral College math, Rather lays out a difficult but do-able path to the White House for George W. Bush.

March 8: On the heels of a disappointing Super Tuesday, Rather says John McCain still may have incentive to keep his candidacy alive.

March 5: Rather warns political forecasts can be fast, furious, - and wrong. Super Tuesday may well prove that rule, not the conventional wisdom.

March 1: Rather marks the coming of something new under the American political sun: a national presidential primary.

Feb. 28: Bush and McCain are at center stage, but here are three other issues that political handicappers are keeping an eye on.

Feb. 27: Here's a handicap on the Republican Party rumor mills as Bush and McCain slug it out in the GOP race for President.

Feb. 22: Whoever wins the Democratic and GOP presidential nominatins, the race in November, as always, will be decided by voters in the political center.

Feb. 15: It was supposed to be the year of the Novelty Candidate, but Trump, Oprah and Warren Beatty are already history.

Feb. 8: The turnout was low. John McCain didn't show. Nevertheless, Rather says George W. Bush came away from Delaware with new confidence - and a few more delegates.

Feb. 7: Rather thinks the first lady has a chance to win the U.S. Senate seat from New York, but only if she makes some changes.

Jan. 27: Those unpredictable New Hampshire voters have done it again by thumbing their noses at the presidential favorites, says Rather.

Jan. 24: President Clinton's final State of the Union address was one of his best, says Rather. Mr. Clinton's oratorical success appeared to stem from tried and true virtues: hard work and preparation.


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