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Interviews With Dukakis, Jackson

June 05, 1988

Registered Democrats who will vote in the June 7 primary owe The Times, reporter Robert Scheer, and researchers Nina Green and Nona Yates a debt of gratitude for recent in-depth interviews with Democratic presidential candidates Michael Dukakis and Jesse Jackson (Part I, May 26, 27).

Over the years I have observed with growing admiration Jackson's ability to recognize that different audiences required different styles of address. At first I worried--I had only heard his evangelical, hallelujah-type delivery. Could he adapt to the more formal requirements of establishment politics and command attention by his mastery of subject matter, rather than by bombast? To my relief and initial surprise as he began to appear on television panels he was able not only to match, but often outclass our most seasoned political candidates by his measured, thoughtful delivery and by the conviction with which he expounded a philosophy that appealed to a country uncomfortable with mounting evidence of cynical disregard for the principles on which a democracy is presumed to be based. I am reassured: The man knows what he is talking about.

That is not to say that I plan to vote for Jackson. Yet I fervently hope that what he is saying and how he is saying it will assure him a voice in developing the party platform and win him the right to help implement the goals he has so clearly articulated.

I plan to vote for Dukakis if he is nominated because I am not only convinced that he is electable, but also that he is the kind of man who, despite differences in emphasis and presentation, has shown respect and understanding for Jackson. I believe they hold similar views as to what a government can and should do for its citizens, all citizens, despite expressed differences in tactics.

ETHEL GREENFIELD

BOOTH

Los Angeles

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