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Up Front -- Convention Report '96: PARTY LINES

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BOB DOLE IS COUNTING ON HIS tax-cutting economic plan to strike a chord with average Americans. But the drafters of the economic plank for the Republican platform seemed a bit tone deaf. Members of the party Platform Committee, chaired by Representative Henry Hyde of Illinois, were aghast to see a draft that read more like a doctoral thesis than an agenda aimed at grassroots voters.

The economic section had few references to creating jobs and to worker anxiety. Instead, it dwelt on Federal Reserve Board monetary policy, Mexican government corruption, trading partner China's use of prison labor--there was even an antiabortion proposal. "We did a terrible job at bringing it down to the average person," grumbled California Attorney General Dan Lungren, head of the committee's economics panel.

So Lungren's group chucked the draft and rewrote the plank in an afternoon. But the rush job had its own problems: It was full of transposed and missing letters and dropped words. The fixes got made in time for the final report. "We are great thinkers but bad typers," Lungren laughed.EDITED BY LARRY LIGHT WITH LISA SANDERS By Richard S. Dunham


The Aging of Abercrombie & Fitch
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