National NOW Times >> Summer, 2000 >> Article
Viewpoint: Stay Out of the
George W. Bush's "no-litmus-test" choice of Dick
Cheney as his running mate is clear confirmation of the policies he would
promote and the nominations he would make to an already closely divided
U.S. Supreme Court, if he were president.
Bush and Cheney are well
Bush supports what our opponents call a
"partial-birth" abortion ban, an abortion procedures ban that even this
conservative Supreme Court found too deceptively written and too dangerous
to women's health to be constitutional.
position mirrors the Republican Platform position, adopted with Bush's
blessing, which calls for a Human Life Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Cheney and the party are on record against the right to abortion even in
cases of rape, incest and endangerment of the life or health of the woman.
But Cheney goes further; in the House he also voted against family
Don't mistake Bush's or Cheney's positions
against reproductive rights for support of already-born children. Bush's
state is dead last in the percent of children without health coverage and
next to last in women without health coverage. Cheney voted against
funding for Head Start, school lunch programs and the Women, Infants and
Children nutrition program. Cheney also opposed prescription drug coverage
and long-term home care under Medicare.
Bush's Texas ranks last in
teacher's salaries and benefits. Cheney voted to eliminate the Department
Bush's state is worst in the nation for pollution.
Cheney was one of only a handful of members of Congress to vote no on the
Clean Air Act and the Safe Drinking Water Act.
explanation for voting against a resolution to free Nelson Mandela was
that the vote reflected his general opposition to economic sanctions, a
topic not included in the resolution. It makes one wonder if he read or
understood what he was voting on.
That leads to another way Bush
and Cheney are well suited to each other. Both went to Yale. Both were
indifferent students. And, both grew up to become Texas tycoons in the oil
Cheney now claims it was the deficit that caused him to join
a few other members of the House in opposing funding of about $1 billion a
year for Head Start. But he had no similar concerns in casting his vote
for a tax cut costing $870 billion in its first five years, including
hundreds of billions of dollars in corporate welfare for oil companies,
utilities, railroads and other business interests.
That makes him
a perfect partner for Bush, who has proposed an upper-income tax cut with
a price tag of more than $ 1.9 trillion over the next decade. Only 2
percent is targeted to low- and middle-income families' tax
Texas comes in last in the quality of criminal defense for
the poor and first in executions. And, Bush, the self-proclaimed
compassionate conservative, mocked condemned prisoner Betty Lou Beets,
whimpering "Please don't kill me!" Bush then complained the comment was
taken out of context. What possible context could excuse such
Bush and Cheney are not compassionate conservatives.
They are ruthless reactionaries. And NOW's Bush-Whacker campaign must make
sure every voter knows it.