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Barbs, Brickbats and Picking the Best on the Ballot

November 05, 2000|MARLO THOMAS | Marlo Thomas is an actress and an activist

On Tuesday, voters in California and across the country will go to the polls and make what I see as a simple choice. There are two men who have a chance to become our president. Only one has demonstrated that he is ready to be president. Only one has offered a set of plans that will build on the success of the past eight years and move our country forward.

Gore has been the most involved and successful vice president in history. His qualifications and experience in both domestic and foreign affairs are unparalleled. He cast the tie-breaking vote to pass the 1993 economic plan, which cut the deficit for the first time in a generation and helped unlock the potential of this new economy--record growth, 22 million new jobs and the lowest unemployment in 30 years.

Serving on the Senate Armed Services Committee and as a member of the National Security Council, Gore has gained the experience necessary to become our commander in chief. He is ready to be our president.

He has a record that reassures me as a woman, always supporting my right to choose. But this election is not about the past. It is about the future and the reality that the next president might appoint up to four justices to the Supreme Court. Gore has made clear that he will support a woman's right to choose by appointing justices who would uphold Roe vs. Wade. Our individual rights are on the ballot.

And as Gore has said, "prosperity itself is on the ballot." He will build on our success and make the right choices to extend our prosperity so that all families can share its benefits. He understands that we must first pay down our national debt and will use two-thirds of the surplus for this purpose. He will cut taxes for the families that need it, helping them with college tuition, child care and retirement savings. He also will make sure that our national priorities are met and our values fulfilled by making important investments to expand health care coverage to all children and bring major changes to the classroom.

Gore's commitment to the environment is lifelong. He cares about America's families and will make it a priority to protect their health by protecting our environment and not leaving our children to clean up our mess.

I know Al Gore. He may not have the charisma of a movie star, but he has the commitment, the conviction and the compassion to be a great president.

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