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The Media and Presidential Debates

October 22, 1988

I will reluctantly vote for Dukakis in November, but I will never forgive him for cooperating with Bush in turning "liberal" into a dirty word. I was furious with Dukakis for repeatedly complaining about Bush's calling him a "leftist" and a "liberal" during the last debate.

I know that the majority of Americans today disapprove of liberals, but how can they ever be expected to change their minds if both the Democratic and Republican nominees seem to agree with them? Most Americans disapproved of conservatives when Barry Goldwater lost the 1964 election, but Lyndon Johnson's enormous unpopularity changed things. (I'm afraid too many Americans will believe in whatever they think is currently fashionable.) Some day a popular Democratic President will make being liberal popular again, but it won't be Dukakis.

Dukakis has based his whole shallow campaign on trying not to offend anyone. He has offended me, and millions of other liberals.

RICHARD A. NATHAN

Los Angeles

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