[Mb-civic]      McCain: Miller's attack on Kerry could hurt Bush

Michael Butler michael at michaelbutler.com
Sat Sep 4 13:40:19 PDT 2004

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    McCain: Miller's attack on Kerry could hurt Bush
    By Janet Hook
    Tribune Newspapers: Los Angeles Times

     Friday 03 September 2004

     NEW YORK ‹ Sen. John McCain, who has pushed for more civility in this
year's presidential race, is warning that the biting attack on Sen. John F.
Kerry by a fellow Democrat at the Republican National Convention on
Wednesday night might harm President Bush's efforts to woo swing voters.

     McCain (R-Ariz.) said the keynote address by Sen. Zell Miller (D-Ga.)
could prove as controversial as a speech by Pat Buchanan at the 1992 GOP
convention in Houston.

     "I think it backfires," McCain said of Miller's rhetorical assault on
Kerry. He added that it "makes Buchanan's speech Š look milquetoast."

     McCain made his comments to reporters at a party he held after the
convention's Wednesday session.

     Buchanan's speech ‹ in which he declared a "cultural war" was underway
in America ‹ was thought by many Republicans to have hurt the reelection bid
of Bush's father, then-President George H.W. Bush. The elder Bush lost the
November vote to Democrat Bill Clinton.

     Miller's keynote address was laced with harsh criticism of Kerry's
legislative record on military issues. Marshall Wittmann, McCain's
spokesman, said the senator favored a less divisive approach to political

     "This is not his style," Wittmann said. "He would prefer to see
Democrats not as our enemies, but rather as Americans who have good
intentions but policy differences" with Republicans.

     McCain has become an active campaigner for the younger Bush's
reelection and will continue that effort in coming days.

     But he also has denounced recent ads by the Swift Boat Veterans for
Truth criticizing Kerry's military service in Vietnam and his later protests
against that war. McCain has urged Bush to condemn the ads.



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