Interest Groups in Action

Photos Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000 Eric M. Appleman/Democracy in Action.  All rights reserved.

July 19, 2000--David Keene, chairman of the American Conservative Union and Donald Devine, chairman of the 2000 Committee for a Conservative Platform and a vice chairman of the ACU, discussed the findings of a survey of about one-fifth of the delegates to the upcoming Republican convention.  "Conservatives have won the war of ideas within the Republican Party," he said.  Keene concurred, stating, "The Republican establishment today is conservative."  Keene said Republicans are in philosophical agreement for the first time since the Reagan years.  A coalition of 40 groups under the leadership of Devine produced the Conservative Platform. 

July 13, 2000--NARAL executive vice president Alice Germond released report cards grading the ten most frequently mentioned Democratic and Republican vice presidential candidates on the issue of choice.  Among the ten Republican prospects there were seven "F's;" New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman scored highest, achieving a "B."  New York Gov. George Pataki received a "C" and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge a "D."  Among the Democratic prospects, there were seven "A's."  Sen. Bob Graham received a "B" and Sen. Evan Bayh and House Democratic Leader Dick Gephardt scored "C's."  Germond said that "all of the Democratic candidates we list here are acceptable to NARAL."  She said choice is "a key swing issue" that "may well determine the outcome of this election."

Credit: PETA.
April 1999--People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals' "Gorey bunny" has been dogging Vice President Gore on the campaign trial. Between March 21 and May 11 the rabbit followed Gore to more than 20 locations; the photos show the Gorey bunny in Bedford, NH on April 17 and at Front Royal, VA on April 22 for Earth Day.

The rabbit is part of a multi-pronged GoreNoMore campaign launched in February to bring a halt to a large-scale new program, backed by Gore, to test widely used chemicals on animals. A PETA spokeswoman said that "Gore personally fast-tracked this program."  The GoreNoMore campaign has included, in addition to the Gorey bunny, newspaper ads (NYT Feb. 24, LAT March 21, WT May 11), a website, celebrity appeals, and stickers and flyers.  Eighteen groups including PETA joined to express their "grave concerns" about the  EPA's high production volume (HPV) chemical testing program in a February 10 letter to the Vice President.

March 22, 1999--Kate Michelman, president of the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League announces a television ad campaign to "expose the anti-choice record of leading Republican presidential candidates."  The spots ran in Iowa and New Hampshire, and later in California.

Feb. 6, 1999--The New Hampshire Christian Coalition's "First in the Nation Primary Gala Celebration" in Manchester attracted three Republican hopefuls--Steve Forbes, Gary Bauer and Alan Keyes.  Former Vice President Dan Quayle put in a video appearance and Sen. Bob Smith's wife Mary Jo appeared on his behalf.
Democratic Leadership Council co-founder and president Al From at the launch of Blueprint. The DLC hopes the new policy journal will "shape the political debate in the 2000 campaign and beyond."