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CNN INSIDE POLITICS

Bush Sends Powell to Middle East; Interview With Karenna Gore Schiff; Interviews With Chuck Hagel, Christopher Dodd

Aired April 4, 2002 - 16:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JUDY WOODRUFF, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Judy Woodruff in Washington. President Bush says the storms of the Mideast violence cannot go on. Colin Powell will go to the region.

MAJOR GARRETT, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: I'm Major Garrett at the White House. The president's decision reflects a change in strategy, and it also reflects intense administration concern with the escalating violence.

JEFF GREENFIELD, CNN SR. ANALYST: I'm Jeff Greenfield in New York. Another diplomatic gesture for peace. When do they actually mean that something may actually change for the better?

JONATHAN KARL, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I'm Jonathan Karl at the six train in Manhattan, where I had the first interview with Karenna Gore since her father conceded the presidential election.

WOODRUFF: Thank you for joining us. Against the backdrop of worsening West Ban, violence, President Bush today made a dramatic break with recent White House policy. The president announced he is sending Secretary of State Colin Powell to the Middle East. His decision comes as Israeli troops expanded their grip on much of the West Bank. And Yasser Arafat remained isolated in Ramallah, surrounded by Israeli troops

This morning, with Secretary Powell at his side, Mr. Bush said the world stands at what he called a critical moment.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Decades of critical experience teach a clear lesson. Progress is impossible when nations emphasize their grievances and ignore their opportunities. The storms of violence cannot go on. Enough is enough.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WOODRUFF: And for more on the president's decision and the reasons behind it, let's turn to CNN's White House correspondent, Major Garrett. Major, tell us more about why the decision and how the administration came to this.

GARRETT: OK, Judy, let's tackle the why first. Four crucial reasons. They're not the only reasons, but they're at the top of the Bush administration agenda. No. 1, the deteriorating relationship between Egypt and Jordan with Israel, reducing government ties. Protests in Amman and Cairo, putting pressure on the Egyptian and Jordanian governments to respond to the situation happening in the occupied territories.

The great fear at the Bush White House that the conflict in the occupied territories could spread to Lebanon, Syria. News of mobilizations there definitely gave the administration pause. Lastly, persistent, though distant rumblings of an Arab oil boycott, all on the minds of the Bush White House as it tries to deal with this policy.

As to how, Judy. This decision was made on Monday. White House speechwriters were brought in on Monday, as were others, to craft the message that we heard from the president today. The lag from Monday to today was devoted to sharpening that message in many ways. For the first time, calling on Israel to withdraw and stop further incursions. But also, the toughest language to date no Yasser Arafat.

A very carefully calibrated message, put together by Secretary of State Powell, but also the vice president, Dick Cheney, and the national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice. Back to you, Judy.

WOODRUFF: Major, there were some very tough words spoken by the president about Yasser Arafat. Let's listen to part of what the president said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BUSH: The situation in which he finds himself today is largely of his own making. He's missed his opportunities, and thereby betrayed the hopes of the people he is supposed to lead.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WOODRUFF: Major, privately, how does the administration view Yasser Arafat's role in moving this process forward?

GARRETT: Judy, officially he is still the chief interlocutor with the Bush administration and, for that matter, the Israeli government, obtaining a cease-fire. But the key verb in the president's phrase there was betrayed -- betrayed his own people. That's not an accidental verb choice, believe me.

There was a lot of thought put into using that precise word, because it goes to the heart of what many in the Bush White House believe Yasser Arafat has done to his own people, and to the cause of a Palestinian state. And for the first time, Judy -- significant development here at the Bush White House -- senior officials made it clear there are other conversations that can be had between top administration officials and others within the Palestinian Authority -- a clear suggestion from the Bush White House that Arafat's time may be limited as the chief interlocutor with the Bush administration. And Bush administration may in the future seek other voices with which to deal -- Judy. WOODRUFF: All right, Major Garrett at the White House. Thank you.

As we said, the president did have strong words for Yasser Arafat this morning. But he also made clear that he has expectations for Israel as well. For the latest, let's turn to CNN's Christiane Amanpour. She is in Jerusalem. Christiane, what are they saying over there about the president's announcement today, that Secretary Powell is going back, and in general, about this new policy?

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, from the Israelis there has been not that much official comment. The Israelis, although we understand they had advanced warning of this speech, we have not had an official statement from the prime minister's offices.

But we have been talking, and I interviewed the deputy defense minister just a few hours ago. They welcome Powell's mission. But she seemed to indicate that any kind of halt to the incursion, as President Bush demanded, any kind of start to the withdrawal of Israeli forces from the territories they've reoccupied in the last week, might -- or would, she said, be conditional on a move from the Palestinian side first.

(CROSSTALK)

WOODRUFF: I'm sorry, Christiane. For some reason I thought we were going to hear a little part of what she had to say. Christiane, I know you've been talking to people there, both officially and unofficially. Was this just a matter of their knowing that the other shoe was going to drop, that the administration had to do something at some point here?

AMANPOUR: Well, I think the sort of the crescendo of demands for the administration to get involved has been sort of earsplitting. It's come, not only from this region, but from Europe as well. Also in the United States. More and more voices raised, asking the administration to step in.

What we know from the Israeli side is that they did have a special security cabinet meeting last night. And, according to published reports here in the Israeli press, senior security officials who are at that cabinet said afterwards that they had -- they thought they would have just a couple more days to finish this operation before pressure from the United States to pull out.

So you know, it's hard to know exactly what is going on behind closed doors. But there did seem to be an awareness here that pressure was mounting on them. And we'll see what happens. Because Anthony Zinni, the envoy, who was rebuffed in his request to visit Yasser Arafat and try to talk about a cease-fire on Monday, will be going apparently tomorrow.

And the deputy defense minister suggested that there might be something that comes out of that that may prompt Israel, the government here, to start doing what President Bush asked them do.

WOODRUFF: So, Christiane, it may be days before we know what they think about all this.

AMANPOUR: Well, yeah, in terms of seeing what might happen on the ground. From the Palestinian perspective, of course, President Bush made a very impassioned attack on the notion of harboring terrorism, or sponsoring terrorism by the Palestinian leadership, and told Yasser Arafat, essentially, that he hadn't done enough at all to confront terrorism.

Nonetheless, Palestinian officials, some leaders have welcomed President Bush's speech as a new and important step. But of course, what they're saying is that they want the military invasion to start now, before Colin Powell gets here.

WOODRUFF: All right. Christiane Amanpour joining us from Jerusalem. My apologies about my miscue a little earlier. Thanks.

A new CNN-"USA Today"-Gallup poll is providing a glimpse of where the American people stand on the Mideast crisis. For a look at some of the results, let's turn to our senior political analyst, Bill Schneider. Bill, first of all, how much pressure has the president been under from the American people?

WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SR. POLITICAL ANALYST: The American people, not very much. He's been under pressure from just about everybody except the American people. It's not that the American people think President Bush has a well thought-out policy in the Middle East. We asked them last night. They don't.

But do Americans really want the United States to offer a bold initiative? Well, we asked them that last night. They don't. The American people favor one policy above all others in the Middle East, and this is caution. The public has appreciated and approved of President Bush's caution so far.

WOODRUFF: Bill, what do the people say about whether the United States should even be talking directly with Yasser Arafat? As we know, the president himself has yet to talk with Mr. Arafat.

SCHNEIDER: That's not clear. And that is, I think, President Bush's dilemma. President Bush has said in the past that anyone who supports or harbors terrorists will be regarded by the U.S. as hostile. So we asked last night whether that policy should apply to Arafat. And it's not this question but a different one. Over 3/4 of Americans said yes, that policy should apply to Yasser Arafat.

When asked the same question by a reporter on Monday -- there's the answer there, President Bush said no. Yasser Arafat should not be treated as a terrorist, because he has signed onto the peace process. The president did harshly criticize Arafat today, saying he had betrayed the hopes of the Palestinian people.

But then he offered Mr. Arafat a way out. Give up terror and you may get your Palestinian state. Is that negotiating with terrorists? Many Israelis would probably say it is.

WOODRUFF: Overall, Bill, are Americans taking sides in all this? SCHNEIDER: I would say halfway. They condemn the Palestinians, but most Americans do not endorse Israel's response. Some people say Israel is acting as a surrogate for the U.S. in the war on terrorism. They are fighting Palestinian terrorists in the same way that the United States fought terrorists in Afghanistan.

But that is not the way the American people see it. Most Americans say that Israel's actions are making it harder for the United States in its war on terrorism, because it's endangering our support in the Arab world.

WOODRUFF: All right, Bill Schneider, thank you very much.

And we're going to keep our focus on the Middle East next. I'll be talking about the president's statements today, about Secretary Powell's upcoming trip, with two members of the Senate foreign relations committee, Chris Dodd and Chuck Hagel.

Also ahead...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BRIAN PALMER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A graduate of Stanford University and Yale law school, also a Rhodes scholar, Booker has already grabbed Newark's attention.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WOODRUFF: CNN's Brian Palmer on a young man supporters say can unite and revive Newark, New Jersey.

Plus, Al Gore's daughter, Karenna Gore-Schiff, talked with our Jon Karl about the political future for herself and her father.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WOODRUFF: "On the Record" today, Senators Chuck Hagel of Nebraska and Chris Dodd of Connecticut. They are both members of the Senate foreign relations committee. Senator Dodd, was this the right move? Will it work? Will it change anything?

SEN. CHRIS DODD (D-CT), FOREIGN RELATIONS CMTE.: First of all, I think you can begin any discussion by expressing the deep sense of sorrow for the loss of life in the Middle East over the last several days and weeks. I commend the president for taking the step today. All so we all want to get behind that, in my view.

But I think you've also got to make the point that this is late. We have not allowed diplomacy to work here. It's been sitting up on the 7th floor of the State Department. We have a highly competent secretary of state that has been sitting on the bench, in my view.

So we should have been engaged in this process further earlier. They should have picked up on the Clinton effort at the end of 2000. There was an extension of Oslo, and the Wye plan. This has been continuing since Jimmy Carter, if you want, at Camp David. This administration just said we're going to put that on the back burner. You cannot leave the Middle East on the back burner. That's the painful lesson.

WOODRUFF: Senator Hagel, is it too late?

SEN. CHUCK HAGEL (R-NE), FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE: No, I don't think it's too late. We're close to being on the brink. I think the president addressed his comments this morning very appropriately. The comments addressed to the Israelis, the Palestinians, and probably most importantly, the Arab leaders.

This is a very dangerous, explosive option that we don't have any risk-free dynamics that we're going to have to deal with. Powell going to the Middle East is exactly the right thing to do. U.S. engagement -- active, enlightened engagement -- is now critical, to not just de-escalation of violence, but getting a political settlement.

WOODRUFF: Senator Dodd, the president did make demands on the Israelis, but he still came across as tougher on the Palestinians, and particularly on Yasser Arafat. Is that the right approach?

DODD: Well, I think if you're going to get in the business of picking sides at this point, clearly...

WOODRUFF: He almost dismissed him. He "betrayed his own people."

DODD: But on the weekend we had a U.N. resolution we were signing on to, and the president giving remarks that indicated that the incursions into the West Bank ought to continue. And when the president speaks, it will always trump a U.N. resolution. So there's been confusion, to put it mildly, on where the administration really stands.

But I think the thing that Chuck just said, we've got to try and get in now if we can, and try and make a difference here. Whether it's monitor, peacekeepers, the international community has got to be involved here. You've got to reactivate diplomacy.

Force is a very legitimate tool to achieve your foreign policy goals. But it ought not to be the first option. It ought to be one of the last options for you. And so engaging the European community, engaging the international community, with the U.S. playing the leadership role here, offers, I think, the only hope of resolving this issue. And absent that, this could expand even further.

WOODRUFF: Senator Hagel, do you agree with the president when he says Yasser Arafat brought this on himself, the situation he is in?

HAGEL: `I think the president's comments were blunt, direct. The assessment was correct. But at the same time, I think all parties have to share some responsibility here. And I think the concurrent actions that the president requested, of the Israelis on complying with the U.N. resolutions, pulling back from those cities, Arafat and the Arab leaders being part of stopping this escalation of violence, is all part of it.

I don't think we should get into, well, it's more their fault than their fault, or maybe somebody in the middle. We are now at a point where we are spinning out of control. And a raging inferno is just around the horizon and over the hill, if we don't get control of this.

WOODRUFF: On that point, Senator Dodd, what do we look for to be able to determine whether the situation is getting any better? I mean, clearly we'll look to the Palestinians to see whether some of the suicide attacks -- you know, they stopped happening. We look to the Israelis to see if they pulled back. What about the Syrians? What about the other Arab nations?

DODD: Well, that's, again, you have to get President Mubarak reengaged in this, the king of Jordan involved in this very directly, as soon as we can, so that those moderate Arab states -- King Abdullah. They've got to reassert themselves again here, to have some input, some pressure, on Syria and others who may be supporting or providing help to the terrorist elements in the Palestinian effort.

That's part of this international effort. This is not going to succeed under the present formulation. No matter how successful President Sharon may be, Prime Minister Sharon, with tanks, that's not going to resolve this issue, any more than terrorist suicide bombs will solve this issue.

And therefore, it does take the president's leadership. I think Colin Powell going is the right move -- should have happened earlier, in my view. And engaging the international community. The U.S. cannot do this alone.

WOODRUFF: And, Senator Hagel, in your view, what's going to determine whether this is successful, at least in the short term? What are you looking for, in the next few days?

HAGEL: Well, obviously having Secretary Powell go, it gives us a wider mandate than General Zinni had. Not just a cease-fire, but a political settlement associated with that, concurrent with that. And that is all part of it.

WOODRUFF: And you're saying that has to happen?

HAGEL: That has to happen. The end game now has to be at the front end here, of this process. There must be an initiative that gives some incentive to stop this. That's the first part of the test of success. Can we break this apart, can we stop this escalation of violence?

But at the same time, we must now be talking about the hard choices, and what comes down the road next. What's the alternative? You can't have one without the other. It is now the hourglass time that is at the bottom, and both have to be side by side.

WOODRUFF: Gentlemen, we are going to have to leave it there. Senator Chuck Hagel and Senator Chris Dodd, we appreciate your coming by. Thank you very much. Good to see you both.

Coming up, a new report on welfare reform calls the Bush administration's policy too strict. We'll hear what the Carlsons, Margaret and Tucker, have to say about that and other issues today.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WOODRUFF: Checking the stories on our INSIDE POLITICS "Newscycle," saying enough is enough. President Bush is making a new push to end violence in the Middle East. Mr. Bush is sending Secretary of State Colin Powell to the region next week.

There is also word that Israel will permit U.S. envoy Anthony Zinni to meet tomorrow with Yasser Arafat. The Palestinian leader remains holed up in his compound in Ramallah in the West Bank.

And a Taliban detainee is to be transferred from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to Norfolk Naval base in the United States. He has produced a valid American birth certificate. Sources tell CNN he was born in Louisiana to Saudi parents. The family later moved back to their homeland.

And joining us now to discuss the issues of the day, Margaret Carlson of "TIME" magazine and Tucker Carlson of CNN's "CROSSFIRE." Margaret, to you first. The president's announcement today at the White House that he's sending Secretary Powell, and basically saying the United States is going to be more involved. We have something at stake here.

MARGARET CARLSON, "TIME": Well, he realized that you can't stand in place. You have to do something, even if you don't have a concrete proposal. Even though you can't get a cease-fire. You've got to ratchet up the involvement. And the only way to do it, in the absence of some solution, is to up the ante of the person you're sending. And you can't get much better than Colin Powell. And he brings a moral heft to the process.

WOODRUFF: Was this the right thing to do right now?

TUCKER CARLSON, "CROSSFIRE": I think it was the right thing. I think it was an important decision. Well, politically, it's important that the Bush administration be seen as doing something, because it was taking -- the Democratic line for the past three weeks has been, well, this is what you get when you disengage the Middle East. Essentially, Bush is responsible for suicide bombings. So politically, it's important.

I think, in real life it's important. Powell is the man. He could even go sooner, in my view. And I think that what he said about Israel was important, challenging Israel to begin a withdrawal. It will be interesting to see whether Israel responds.

And I think it's important. There's no defending blocking ambulances, for instance. So while obviously he laid most of the blame correctly on Arafat, he also said that Israeli has a role to play. WOODRUFF: Some political risk to engaging, but greater risk to not doing anything.

M. CARLSON: The political rule is, don't get involved if you can't see a way out and you can't see some progress. But the United States doesn't have much choice. Because without us, we know what happens. Without the United States, we know what happens. So there has to be a "with." And now we're there.

And what Bush did today, I think, was to kind of come back to the middle. He'd been tilting towards Israel and he had to get back in the middle there, in order to set a predicate for Powell going.

WOODRUFF: Tucker, I want to change the subject now and ask about something here on the domestic front. There's a report commissioned by the National Governor's Association on welfare reform, the president's welfare reform policies. The study concluded a majority of the states think the president's policy to increase work requirements, up to 40-hour work week, is the wrong way to go. Now, what's the fallout here?

T. CARLSON: Well, the majority of states want more federal dollars for child care in this case, which is really, I think, what's going on here. I mean, the proposal is pretty reasonable. The Clinton welfare reform law requires 50 percent of all welfare recipients to work at least 30 hours a week.

Only 34 percent of them work now. So Bush says, look, you know, we need to increase that. And they need to work 40 hours a week. And the report, which basically makes the point that menial labor is beneath the dignity of welfare recipients -- kind of hard to take seriously, but that's not what it's about. It's about getting more federal money for child care.

M. CARLSON: But it's also not about menial labor being beneath the recipients. It's that the governors -- 21 of whom are Republicans, great majority are Republican, so it's not partisan at all -- is saying that the states withdraw some of the money once you reach a certain point of earnings, 27 states take away benefits. Moreover, the kind of work that welfare recipients generally get is shift or part-time work.

And the third thing is, is that they need day care and transportation more than anything else. Everybody knows it costs more to get off welfare in the short run than to stay on. And that's one of the things that's been stinted on, is the day care money.

WOODRUFF: Very quickly, Tucker, shall we look for a change in the administration views on this?

T. CARLSON: I don't think so. In fact, the response from Wade Horn -- he was the administration point man on this -- was pretty belligerent. He basically said, you're wrong, you know, the governors are wrong. I mean, this is, in many ways, the age-old debate about unfunded mandates, and just the natural tension between the states and the federal government, over who is going to pay. WOODRUFF: We going to leave it there. Tucker Carlson, Margaret Carlson, thank you both. Great to see you.

Just ahead on INSIDE POLITICS, Bob Novak has the "Inside Buzz" on some stories here in Washington.

And New Jersey's biggest city is getting ready to elect a mayor. We'll meet one of the candidates, who's getting some national attention.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WOODRUFF: Time now for some "Inside Buzz."

Earlier today, I stopped by Bob Novak's office to see what he has been working on.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WOODRUFF: Bob Novak, thank you for letting us come into your office to peek inside your notebook.

First of all, Congress is coming back next week. And you've picked up what the administration is going to be talking about.

ROBERT NOVAK, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, you would think they would go after the Senate Democrats for not confirming judges.

But, as I understand it, the president is going to come out in public on Monday to try to revive the bill for loans to insurance companies to ensure against terrorism. That, you remember, passed the House way back in November. It's been stalled in the Democratic Senate because of the trial lawyers. It is going to be very interesting, Judy, to see if, on this presentation Monday, the AFL-CIO Building Trades Council shows up to support the administration bill. They are trying to get blue-collar, AFL-CIO support for the measure.

WOODRUFF: Bob, another terrorism-related story: this whole question of permitting airline pilots, commercial airline pilots to be armed. Where does all that stand?

NOVAK: Well, you know, the Congress approved that, but sort of, but the administration has to put that into effect. They haven't done a thing.

The airline unions of airline pilots who want it are up in arms against it. They blame Tom Ridge, the homeland security director. They say that he is anti-gun. That's not true. The NRA gives him an A-plus rating on guns. But they also blame their bosses, the airlines. And that is true. The airlines are fighting that. They don't like the liability concerns. What if an airline pilot would shoot a passenger accidentally?

WOODRUFF: All right, we're going to move onto election politics this year in Massachusetts: Mitt Romney now looking like the Republican nominee for governor. What's going on with conservatives? NOVAK: There's a little buyer remorse, Judy, because some of the people who talked Mitt Romney -- who was the spectacular star of saving the Salt Lake City Olympics -- talked him into running for governor, they are stunned that he has refused to sign the anti-tax increase pledge that the last three Republican governors of Massachusetts, Weld, Cellucci, and Jane Swift had all signed.

They got with him for about 40 minutes, tried to get him to do it. He said he wouldn't sign it. They said that's going to put him at a disadvantage with the legislature, Democratic legislature. And they may be right, because "The Boston Globe" has commended, commended Mr. Romney for opening the door to a possible tax increase.

WOODRUFF: Well, speaking of increases, last but not least, a pay increase, a pay raise for some of those hardworking staff people in the Congress. What's this all about?

NOVAK: This is favorite story.

In "The Hill" newspaper yesterday, John Scofield, the spokesman for the House Appropriations Committee, was quoted as saying congressional staff who are crafting legislation, whether it is a defense supplemental or a crime bill, are just as important as someone who is serving on the front line. So Mr. Scofield wants these congressional bureaucrats to get the same 4.1 percent pay increase that the troops in Afghanistan are getting.

Now, it's very unusual for a staffer to come out and say that. But the truth is, of course, Mr. Scofield gets more than twice as much salary as a soldier with four years service gets. So that's kind of interesting: life in Washington and its values.

WOODRUFF: Are you saying that they don't deserve a pay raise at all, or...

NOVAK: Let the public decide.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WOODRUFF: What do we expect Bob Novak to say? "Let the public decide."

Well, the race for mayor in New Jersey's biggest city is heating up. Voters in Newark will choose a leader on May 14. One of the candidates is getting national attention as he tries to unseat the 16- year incumbent.

CNN's Brian Palmer gives us a closer look at Cory Booker.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CORY BOOKER (D), NEWARK MAYORAL CANDIDATE: How's everybody doing today?

PALMER (voice-over): With a challenger's hunger, Cory Booker bounds across Newark hunting for votes.

BOOKER: The drug dealers are choking our neighborhoods and the stolen car rates are going up.

PALMER: His message tailored to each voter, but always similar themes: bringing economic opportunity to blighted neighborhoods; improving education; rooting out drugs.

BOOKER: We're going to try to put over 300 new officers into the communities.

PALMER: In the Ironbound neighborhood, heavily Portuguese- and Spanish-speaking, Booker pitches passersby. It's not pretty Spanish, but it is Spanish.

A graduate of Stanford University and Yale Law School, also a Rhodes Scholar, Booker has already grabbed Newark's attention. As a city councilman, he launched a series of protests -- stunts, his critics called them -- to get city officials to do something about crime in his ward.

ANDREW TISCH, CHAIRMAN, LOEWS CORP.: I think the fact that he went out and pitched a tent in front of a crack house, that's crazy. That is truly insane. But what happened? It energized the community. The community got behind him.

PALMER: Booker also energized wealthy and white Democrats like Tisch and Barbra Streisand. Current Mayor Sharpe James uses their involvement to label Booker an outsider.

(on camera): How do you respond to that?

BOOKER: Well, I sort of laugh about that because, first and foremost, we have a long record of service in the city of Newark, me and my team. We have been fighting it out in some of the toughest neighborhoods in the city and actually making a difference.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BOOKER: It's time we made all of Newark safe, not just the downtown.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PALMER (voice-over): Booker's audacity, his resume, his pedigree, and his looks have garnered him national attention, notably from the Democratic Leadership Council, which put him on their top 100 Democrats-to-watch list.

SHARPE JAMES, MAYOR OF NEWARK: Newark today is making progress, progress that we can all be proud of.

PALMER: James has been mayor for 16 years and a city official for 32, just about as long as Booker has been alive. In recent years, there has been a surge of development in the once-shabby downtown, which the mayor points to as a major accomplishment. (on camera): What can you do that the incumbent hasn't been able to do?

BOOKER: Well, really focus on the city's priorities. A lot of activities and attention and resources has gone down to downtown development. But we haven't been focusing on the most important issue, which is dealing with crime in the neighborhoods, investing in our children, making sure our schools have the resources they need.

PALMER (voice-over): Booker's opponents and some political analysts point to his relative inexperience in government.

ELIZABETH STROM, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY: Booker has tried hard to get campaign finance reform passed. And he didn't succeed. He's been active in other sort of good-government, open-government issues. But I think that he is, of course, as an executive, rather untested.

PALMER (on camera): This race, already heated and very expensive, may turn out to be less about substance than style: Booker selling himself as an independent fighting against an entrenched Democratic machine; James styling himself an effective and mature leader against a flashy and green outsider.

Brian Palmer, CNN, Newark, New Jersey.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WOODRUFF: And checking the headlines in "Campaign News Daily": Former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry has decided against a return to politics. Barry said today that he will not run for the city council. He said a number of issues factored in his decision, including an incident last month in which U.S. Park Police said they found traces of illegal drugs in his car. Barry had denied any wrongdoing.

Vice President Dick Cheney is on the campaign trail raising money for Republican House and Senate candidates. Cheney's stops this week included appearances in Colorado, Missouri, and Arkansas. Tomorrow, he will be in Mississippi and in Texas, where he will throw out the first pitch at the Texas Rangers baseball game.

Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and his wife, Janet, say they will have separate campaigns in their races for statewide offices. The governor is running for reelection. The first lady is running for secretary of state. Janet Huckabee told "The Today Show" the couple is not being greedy, as some critics have suggested. She said they are looking to be of service.

The delicate business of diplomacy straight ahead: Our Jeff Greenfield shares his thoughts on the Middle East and the challenge of negotiating peace.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WOODRUFF: Secretary of State Colin Powell is just the latest in a long line of diplomats who have tackled the Middle East conflict. In today's "Bite of the Apple," our Jeff Greenfield says past attempts have left behind a trail of failed initiatives.

GREENFIELD: If you've been listening to today's diplomatic language that surrounds the current Middle East upheaval, you are hearing something like this: "The Powell mission might revive the Zinni initiative to implement the Tenet work plan, so that the Mitchell plan can fulfill the promise of the Oslo accords."

This is another way of saying, "Since nothing has worked so far, let's try another mechanism on top of all the others," which raises this question: How do we tell the difference between a meaningless gesture and a real breakthrough?

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(voice-over): After World War I, there were all sorts of good intentions to make sure such carnage never happened again.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: The treaty to end World War I.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GREENFIELD: The Allies hammered together the Treaty of Versailles. Germany was disarmed. The League of Nations was formed. And, in 1928, the Kellogg-Briand Pact was signed, ensuring an end to war. It didn't exactly work out.

Anger, resentment, economic chaos fueled the rise of Hitler in Germany. Europeans were unwilling or unable to stop his expansionist reach. And another World War erupted. World War II was called the war to end wars. Surely the world would not be plunged once again into conflict. The United Nations would see to that.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HARRY TRUMAN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You have won a victory against war itself.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GREENFIELD: It didn't exactly work out. The U.S. found itself at war in Korea and in Vietnam. Mass slaughter erupted in Cambodia and Rwanda. And what prevented the Cold War from going nuclear was not international agreement, but cold-blooded notions of self- preservation in Washington and Moscow.

Here, by contrast, are actual real-life examples of major breakthroughs. When the U.S. and Soviet Union negotiated a test-ban treaty in 1963, it signaled that the superpowers were prepared -- slowly, step by step -- to walk away from the nuclear brink.

When Egypt's Anwar Sadat went to Israel in 1977, it meant the strongest Arab military force was prepared to live in peace with Israel. There has not been war in the Middle East since -- so far. And when President Nixon met with China's Mao in 1972, that signaled that nearly a quarter-century of hostility and isolation was breaking down for real.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GREENFIELD: So, you can save yourself a lot of time by asking one question: Have any of the principals given any hint that they are prepared to change their minds about the bedrock issues? If not, you can take all of the plans and proposals and formulas for Middle East peace and store them in that circular file underneath your desk -- Judy.

WOODRUFF: Not an easy mission he's about to embark on.

Jeff Greenfield, thanks very much.

Just ahead:

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KARENNA GORE SCHIFF, DAUGHTER OF AL GORE: Even if he is not a candidate in 2004, he is going to speak up for the issues that he cares about so deeply. And I'm very proud of that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WOODRUFF: She is extremely close to her father. And she's mulling over some political plans of her own. We will hear from Karenna Gore Schiff in our "Subway series."

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WOODRUFF: Tipper Gore is speaking out about her recent decision not to run for the U.S. Senate in Tennessee.

On NBC's "Today Show," the wife of former Vice President Al Gore talked about how a Senate race might have impacted her husband's political plans. She said -- quote -- "If I had run, I would have won, I believe. And that would have quote/unquote 'helped' him, would be the speculation. And I agree with that. If I had run and not won, then that would not have helped him. Of course, that is obvious. It was a factor, but it did not make my decision."

Our "Subway Series" in New York focuses today on Karenna Gore Schiff, who is the Gores' eldest child. She talks to our Jonathan Karl about life in the Big Apple, about her famous parents, and about her own political plans.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

KARL: You've been in New York now almost five years.

SCHIFF: Right.

KARL: After living in Tennessee, living in Washington, do you feel like a New Yorker yet?

SCHIFF: I do feel like a New Yorker, actually. I've gotten kind of hooked on the city. And my husband was born and raised here. And it's a great place to live.

KARL: And you're raising two kids now.

SCHIFF: I'm raising two kids. My son will be 3 in July. And my daughter is 7 months. So I've just started back to work part-time.

KARL: So, we haven't seen much of you since the end of the campaign, which -- man, it's been a while already. How has life changed? That was such an intense campaign. You were such a central player in that campaign.

SCHIFF: Well, thank you.

A lot has changed, I guess, in the sense that I have another child, for one thing, which is wonderful. I had a daughter in August. And I've started working as a lawyer, which is great.

KARL: Now, if your father were to run again, do you feel ready to lose your children's grandfather again to the campaign?

SCHIFF: Oh, I would be very supportive and very excited if he chose to run again. But he hasn't decided. I am so proud of him. I think he's been a really strong voice in this country. He's been a great patriot. And he has really stood for unity in this time, in the wake of the terrorist attacks. But he also has really stood up to say: "We need smarter economic policies. We need environmental protection."

KARL: Are we going to be seeing more of him more and more?

SCHIFF: Yes. Yes. No matter what, even if he is not a candidate in 2004, he is going to speak up for the issues that he cares about so deeply. And I'm very proud of that. It's going to be exciting.

KARL: We went down to Tennessee when your mom was considering running for Senate and talked to Harold Ford. One thing he said is, "There will be a Gore woman running for office at some point." And his prediction was that it would be you. So what do you think?

SCHIFF: Oh, I love Harold. He's such a good friend.

I don't know. I really love grassroots politics. I care a lot about issues that other people do: environmental protection and health care and education. It was such a privilege to be able to talk about those things out on the campaign trail in 2000. So, I don't know if I'll be a candidate, but it's something that I would not rule out.

KARL: Now, you've been involved in national politics as an important adviser to your father, somebody who traveled the country speaking on his behalf in a presidential campaign. If you were to get involved in politics more directly yourself, do you think it would be in New York?

SCHIFF: I do feel like it's home, so I don't know. But, when I vote, I vote on the basis of New York issues. And I support local candidates in our city and in our state. So, I feel politically oriented to New York right now.

KARL: Did you want your mom to run?

SCHIFF: I was so excited at the possibility of her running, because she would be such a terrific candidate. I really thought that it was something that was so personal. She had to want to do it personally. And she made the decision that was right for her. But I think that the fact that so many people reached out to her from Tennessee and around the country was a real tribute to her work and...

KARL: Did she get close to running?

SCHIFF: She definitely considered it very seriously.

KARL: We have just a minute, I might want to just ask you about September 11.

SCHIFF: Sure.

KARL: What was it like being in New York in those weeks -- days and weeks after, when the city was full of soot? The aftermath you could literally taste in the air. What was it like?

SCHIFF: Well, it was a strange feeling, obviously. The wind would shift and sometimes it would blow uptown. And sometimes it was just like a beautiful, clear day. And unless you looked at the pictures on TV, you wouldn't have known what happened downtown. But I think, more than anything, I felt so proud to be a New Yorker at that moment, because you really saw people coming together. It was really the best of the city.

And I know it has been said. It's almost cliche, but it is really true. It was a time when I was so proud to be a New Yorker and to be an American. And I continue to feel that. It is amazing how unified we were.

KARL: How soon was it after the news that you heard from your parents? I imagine they would have wanted to get ahold of you right away.

SCHIFF: Right.

That day. My father was actually out of the country. And he was trying to get through. And, of course, the lines were cut and crossed and it was crowded. And it was difficult. But I did talk to him that day. I talked to my mother immediately. And she was right near the Pentagon. So that was a whole...

KARL: Yes.

SCHIFF: At that time, we didn't where there were going to be more attacks. But we were all on the phone with each other as soon as possible. It was a terrible, scary feeling that day, though, because you knew that -- first, you checked to see if your family was OK. And then, after that, you didn't know if you were crossing the street or walking across through the lobby or going to your office, whether someone else had lost a loved one.

And it still feels like that, to some extent. I think, obviously, as time passes, we move on, but we don't forget. And it's something that has changed the city forever, I think.

KARL: Well, I want to thank you. And good to see you.

SCHIFF: Thank you.

KARL: And you're looking every bit the New Yorker.

(LAUGHTER)

SCHIFF: Well, thank you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WOODRUFF: Jon Karl in the "Subway Series" with Karenna Gore Schiff.

We'll be back with more INSIDE POLITICS in a moment.

But, first, let's check in with CNN's Kate Snow for a look at what's coming up at the top of the hour on "WOLF BLITZER REPORTS" -- Kate.

KATE SNOW, "WOLF BLITZER REPORTS" Judy, thanks.

President Bush's big move, is it going over well in the Middle East? I'll ask the men who have the ears of Ariel Sharon and Yasser Arafat. Also, what is being done to stop that standoff at the site known as Jesus' birthplace? I'll speak with the mayor of Bethlehem. And a major morning show anchor calls it quits -- and why scientists say they can't complain about cousins marrying cousins -- all that after INSIDE POLITICS.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WOODRUFF: A CNN original was remembered this afternoon at a memorial service here in Washington. Ed Turner died of cancer over the weekend at a Washington hospital. He was 66 years old. Ed was among the small group of executives hired by Ted Turner to create CNN more than two decades ago. He was executive vice president when he stepped down in 1998. He picked up eight Emmys and four Peabody awards during his career. An Oklahoma native, he got his start in Oklahoma City in 1959, before moving on to Washington and later to CBS in New York -- Ed Turner.

CNN's coverage continues now with "WOLF BLITZER REPORTS." Thanks for joining us. I'm Judy Woodruff.

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Gore Schiff; Interviews With Chuck Hagel, Christopher Dodd>


 
 
 
 


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