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GOP CONVENTION '96

The Perfect Platform

August 13, 1996

"Fusions of ambiguity." That's the phrase that Wendell L. Wilkie, the Republican presidential nominee in 1940, used to describe party platforms. As Wilkie saw it, a good platform would outline the party's position on most major issues by emphasizing areas of agreement and avoiding the disagreements. Republicans on Monday adopted the party's 41-page national platform. The first party platform was adopted by the Democrats in 1840; the first Republican platform was written upon the founding of the party in 1956.

Fear of the Unknown

Do you agree or disagree with this statement: "When it comes time to vote for president, the devil you know is better than the devil you don't know." According to a Times nationwide presidential poll, 57% of Americans agree--a finding sure to cheers Clinton boosters. Among Republicans, 48% agree, 45% disagree and 7% don't know.

Good Record on Animal Rights

Animal-rights advocates attending the Republican convention say their cause has long been embraced by the Grand Old Party. Compassion Campaign '96, an animal-rights group headquartered in Bethesda, Md., gives GOP presidential candidate Bob Dole credit for compiling a good record on animal protection issues during his tenure in the Senate. The group also notes that Abraham Lincoln once proclaimed himself "in favor of animal rights as well as human rights."

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