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THE RECALL CAMPAIGN | RECALL NOTEBOOK

Simon Comes Up With a Slogan of His Own

August 12, 2003|From Staff and Wire Reports

Bill Simon Jr. may not have announced his campaign on a late-night talk show, but that doesn't mean he can't dazzle audiences with a quip. Take his appearance Monday before the Conservative Order of Good Guys, a Republican group in San Diego.

Pressed by an audience member to come up with a campaign slogan, Simon said: "Since 'I'll be back' and 'Hasta la vista, baby' are already taken, maybe my slogan would be 'Renewing the California dream.' "

Hello? Is this thing on? After a moment Simon observed that this is the time for policy, not sound bites. But then, while speaking about the policies he would favor as governor -- no new taxes, putting off the high school exit exam -- he had a lightbulb moment: "Common-sense solutions from a compassionate conservative," he said. "Maybe that's my mantra!"

Some Candidates to Be Contestants

"I'll take 'Budget Shortfalls for $38 Billion,' Alex."

OK, maybe that's not exactly what Game Show Network has in mind, but it's serious about spoofing the recall in an October special named "Who Wants to Be Governor of California? The Debating Game."

Network President Rich Cronin said the Oct. 1 program will chronicle the campaigns of five candidates whose names have yet to be announced -- complete with buzz-in answers and bonus questions. Top prize: $21,200, the maximum corporate campaign contribution allowed by law.

"Politics is the ultimate game and the California recall election is one of the most bizarre contests in American history," Cronin said.

The winner will be the candidate who gets the most votes in the Oct. 7 recall election.

Getting a Notion of Reagan's View

True, former President Reagan has Alzheimer's disease and isn't able to comment on the recall. Even so, his biographer, Lou Cannon, told the Ventura County Star that he had a pretty good idea of the Gipper's views on the subject.

"I can't imagine Reagan would favor recall," Cannon said. "There's nothing conservative about recall. It's radical. Reagan was not a radical. Reagan was conservative in the old-fashioned sense."

Big Names Back Schwarzenegger

President Bush said last week that Arnold Schwarzenegger would make a "good governor." Now the former actor appears to have another GOP heavyweight on his side.

New York Gov. George Pataki is throwing his political muscle behind Schwarzenegger's bid for governor of California, aides and advisors said.

"The governor thinks it's great that Arnold Schwarzenegger is running for governor because he will bring a fresh perspective and new ideas to California," said Pataki spokeswoman Lisa Dewald Stoll.

Among other things, Pataki's fund-raising team staged a luncheon for the bodybuilder turned actor turned politician Monday in New York City so he could meet potential donors.

The Pataki team was also working out possible New York fund-raising events for Schwarzenegger.

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