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Sharing the Blame

August 16, 1987

The American people bear the ultimate responsibility for Contragate.

Archibald Cox in "A Watergate Warrior's View of Contragate" (by Elizabeth Mehren, Aug. 5) observed, "In the future, it may be that we will find ways to form a little wiser, more thoughtful judgment about character when it comes to electing people." That observation is incomplete.

Competence and capability are just as vital as character in a President.

Had we chosen Jimmy Carter in 1980, Contragate would never have occurred. He not only would have strangled such a monstrosity in its crib, his management skills would have prevented the irrational buildup of our national debt to an obscene $2.3 trillion and our slide into becoming a debtor nation.

JAMES WATKINS

Van Nuys

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