|Good Luck Senator Hillary
and Thank Goodness
I'm Not A Nail Biter
By MICHAEL SCHENKLER
Sunday night 11/05: So, I sat
down at the computer to begin writing my column puzzled by the dilemma of writing a
political commentary two days before the national election which was to be published two
days after results are in.
The weekend is usually my writing time.
Publishing the Trib and the PRESS take a huge chunk of time
out of the workweek and freeing up time to devote to the column is frequently not doable.
This week, I considered waiting until Tuesday night to attack the writing. However, my
concern that the two most significant elections I would want to comment on
Presidential and US Senator from NY might not be decided till the wee hours of the
morning caused me to begin banging the keys. More often than not, beginning is three
quarters of the job once really started, the rest comes easily most of the
Thus, I decided to begin the process
My computer is in my office which opens to
the den and the large screen TV. As is the norm, I turn on the computer; I turn on the TV.
Saturday Night Lives Presidential Bash is just beginning.
I take a break from writing. Phew!
Monday 11/06: Still not sure
what topic(s) to tackle, I consider calls from two longtime readers, both of whom seem
like family one actually is. "Politics," they say, "is what they
want to read in my column." Terri Thomson, Queens Board of Ed member and Citibank
Governmental Affairs veep and Judy Bergtraum, assistant commissioner, NYC Dept of
Transportation, who together have been part of my network for more than 70 years
you add together the time Ive known each. Both called in the past week to encourage
me to focus on politics. Terri even had the audacity to call my Halloween story boring.
Hey Terri, show me a present day product of the NYC school system that can do better. You
leave my writing alone and I wont blame the reading scores on you. Seriously, Terri
is doing a heck of a job tackling an unmanageable school system. And Judy wanted to say
boring, but she was too afraid Id mention her name in print. Dont worry, Judy,
I wont . . . and about that stop sign . . .
But how is one to do politics on Monday,
with the election on Tuesday?
Watch Florida, Missouri and Michigan. Gore
must win two of those three or Bush will be the next President remember, were
still in Monday. I like to play those games. Do a quick analysis and determine the short
cut to pick the winner before NBC or CNN. Now, if Gore wins all three, hes the
winner. If he wins 2 of the 3, watch Iowa, Washington and Minnesota. Two of those three
will then make the winner.
The reasoning isnt all that complex.
Gore has approximately 191 locked up electoral votes (Im giving him
Pennsylvanias 23); Bush about 222 youve read or heard the lists, they
dont vary that much. That leaves about 125 up for grabs with 270 needed to win.
Florida is the biggie with 25 electoral
votes and George Dubyas brother Jeb its Guv. Yet, the polls say its up for
grabs. It must be my mother and the other transplanted New Yorkers wholl never
forget their liberal roots right on, mom.
Tuesday 11/07, 10:20 p.m. -
Election Day : Florida was just moved back to the undecided column after sitting in
the Gore column for most of the evening, according to NBC.
I have made the decision to write over my
previously completed analysis because, as I stated: watch Florida!
But it seems that well all be
watching into the wee hours of the morning and quite possibly beyond maybe
well still be watching as this paper hits the streets.
Cell phones bring a whole new wrinkle to
this Election watching for us political junkies. Spoke to my good friend Great Neck PR
guru Robert Zimmerman who is in Nashville with the Veep maybe the President by the
time you read this.
Zimmerman, always cool, sure didnt
sound cool to me this evening imagine how the candidates feel!
Also spoke to Mike Nussbaum at Hillary
headquarters in Manhattan. He called me a couple of minutes after 9 p.m. to find out what
was going on they couldnt hear anything there. I shared the fact that NBC and
CBS had projected Hillary the winner. And they didnt know yet. Hmmm!
But it all really doesnt matter, when
you read this, the election will be over and unless you want to play Monday morning
quarterback with my analysis, disregard much of the above.
If you like the analysis, remind me in four
years and Ill run my take a week earlier.
As the networks decide they cant yet
decide, let me wrap up my take on the big one: Al Gore had it all coming out of the
convention. His inability to connect with the people and juvenile-like exaggerations gave
it back to Bush.
Dubya didnt come clean about his
checkered past and no one believes he graduated honestly from Yale and thus, it all came
down to the wire. Iowa, where the primary season started, could decide it all. But
Im still watching Florida.
And these are all the best that the
greatest country on earth has to offer.
THE SENATE RACE
On the Senate front, the people of New York
were able to overcome all those objections about Hillary. There was no comparison between
this bright exceptional woman and the novice Lazio who ran a mean-spirited campaign. In
the end, the disparity of substance convinced voters to do the right thing.
Mailed in from Bayside reader Jean Carroll:
To The Editor:
Schenkler penned a ditty
That appeared in the Tribune.
Twas not a poem devoted
To the moon and spoon in June.
It nonetheless omitted
The endless praise of Hillary
To which he is committed.
What will you say, dear Michael,
When election day has passed
And Hillary (thank heavens)
Will have proved to finish last?
Thank you for your ditty
I love letters done in verse
They show that you are witty
Even if content is perverse.
As one bard to another
Please allow me to explain
That poetic license doesnt
Excuse writing thats insane.
Although its only Monday.
I respond to your words with glee
That the people of New York
Sent another Clinton to D.C.
Michael Schenkler can be reached at: MSchenkler@QueensTribune.com
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