Showdown: The Struggle Between the Gingrich Congress and the Clinton White House

Elizabeth Drew, Author
Elizabeth Drew, Author Simon & Schuster $25 (0p) ISBN 978-0-684-81518-3
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-684-82551-9
Ebook - 400 pages - 978-1-4391-4347-6
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Washington political reporter Drew (On the Edge) believes that House Speaker Newt Gingrich and his fellow conservative Republicans have overinterpreted--and outrun--their mandate to scale back government. Based on interviews with key players of both parties, her chronicle of the battle between the Clinton White House and a Republican Congress concludes that the president has regained the moral high ground with voters disenchanted with a congressional majority that seemingly has scored few positive accomplishments. Drew labels as farcical the Republican proposal to balance the budget in seven years, largely because tax cuts will make the deficit increase again after year seven. She accuses the Republicans of ""playing suburban politics"" by favoring their own constituencies, which do not include the poor, and by devolving power to the states. And she persuasively argues that the debate over Republican cuts in Medicare was fraudulent on both sides--Republicans in effect proposed to change the nature of Medicare, luring the elderly into private plans, while the Clinton administration took a pass on the hard questions of controlling costs. This is a trenchant, behind-the-scenes look at the making--and possible unmaking--of Gingrich's ""Contract With America."" (Apr.)
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