On the other hand, Dornan said: "I still have the biggest star of Hollywood of all time in politics--Ronald Reagan. So what I say to the Hollywood left is, 'Try again. Come and get me.' "
Christopher Townsend, an officer in the Orange County Democratic Party, said a Kovic-Dornan race would pit a candidate "who has actually fought for the flag against one who just wrapped himself in it."
For the Record
Los Angeles Times Saturday January 6, 1990 Home Edition Part A Page 2 Column 6 National Desk 2 inches; 36 words Type of Material: Correction
Ron Kovic--The war record of possible congressional candidate Ron Kovic was misstated in a quotation Friday. A political consultant quoted in a story about the Vietnam veteran and anti-war activist incorrectly said Kovic had received the Medal of Honor.
"Born on the Fourth of July" follows Kovic's personal struggle after he returned from the war as a decorated and disabled veteran who was treated badly in a government hospital and was alienated from his former friends and family.
Kovic eventually became active in the anti-war movement. The movie depicts Kovic being ejected from the GOP convention after shouting anti-war slogans during President Richard M. Nixon's acceptance speech.
The movie also shows Cruise being wheeled onto the podium of the 1976 Democratic National Convention in a re-creation of Kovic's speech, which was enthusiastically received.
Dornan was an Air Force fighter pilot from 1953 to 1958, but he never flew a combat mission. In the House, he has acquired a reputation as a flamboyant, theatrical advocate of a strong national defense and a staunch foe of abortion and homosexual rights.
Dornan previously served three terms in the Congress as a representative from the Santa Monica area. When reapportionment made the district far more liberal, he sought election to the U.S. Senate in 1982 and lost. He later moved to Orange County and in 1984 defeated incumbent Democrat Jerry Patterson.
If Ron Kovic decided to seek the 38th Congressional District seat, he would not have to move into the district. Melissa Warren, spokeswoman for the California secretary of state's office, said the law requires only that Congressional candidates be registered to vote in the same state as the district they are seeking to represent. She said the deadline for candidates to enter the 1990 congressional race is March 9.