Susan Estrich Quotes

  1. The personal is political, but only to a point.
  2. John Kennedy won the first televised presidential debate among those watching it, while Richard Nixon won among those listening on the radio.
  3. People don’t vote for vice president, they vote for president.
  4. Most people don’t know who Ken Mehlman is. He’s the chairman of the Republican Party, obviously, but what he’s doing that Howard Dean isn’t doing is spending a lot of time on the nuts and bolts of putting the party together.
  5. Every time I hear someone making ignorant comments about the supposed ‘evils’ of homosexuality, I think about the true evil of the high suicide rates among gay and lesbian teens.
  6. Affirmative action was never meant to be permanent, and now is truly the time to move on to some other approach.
  7. Perhaps the cruelest thing ever said of Hubert Humphrey was that he had the soul of a vice president.
  8. It used to be that you could have fun with interviews with the foreign press, knowing that nothing you said would make it back to any voters until long after the election was over, if ever.
  9. When I was applying to college, my mother told me I could apply to any school within the Boston subway map.
  10. When you’re standing in front of an audience like this that is so enthusiastic and so much behind you, it is very hard to give a bad speech. Even a bad speech sounds good in a convention hall like this.
  11. Gore’s problem is that the issues are all on his side.
  12. Senseless violence is, almost by definition, hard to understand. Not that I can understand terrorists who kill from hate, but at least we can identify a reason – a terrifying one, to be sure, grounded in a violent belief system – for what they do. Two gangs go to war. Extremists kill in the name of belief.
  13. Most people don’t actually like the press. The friend of my enemy is not necessarily my friend.
  14. Most people who make threats don’t follow through. The most dangerous people are often those who never make threats. But ‘most’ and ‘often’ aren’t what you are looking for when you’re dealing with a scary person. You want to ‘know.’ And there is no knowing.
  15. I work for Fox News as a commentator. I say whatever I want. I’m the blonde on the left, figuratively and literally – the one who’s usually smiling because it’s T.V., not the Supreme Court or Congress, and I find civility more effective in any event.
  16. Rock stars generally don’t last in the Senate, starting with John Kennedy. Too much work, too slow, too little juice. Getting something accomplished takes a remarkable amount of tedious work. Rock stars who become senators either run for something else or retire on the job. They certainly don’t make a mark.
  17. The Olympics are coming… and it’s a big problem in American politics, because the problem with holding the Olympics this fall is that we’re all going to be focused on the Olympics, and it makes that window of opportunity for Gore to win the election that much smaller.
  18. When I ask the young people from California why they want to go to New York, and the ones from the East why they’re determined to go West, I hear what you’d expect: new challenges, different weather, boyfriends, girlfriends, to make a name… They laugh when I say, ‘But your poor mother.’
  19. Al Gore didn’t need to distance himself from Bill Clinton when he ran for president in 2000 because, when he ran, the country was in very good shape: strong economically and not at war. He did it anyway, and it was, in many people’s estimate, mine included, one of the reasons he lost.
  20. The idea that somehow you’re going to tax the ‘rich’ enough to pay for quality health care for every American who doesn’t have it, can’t afford it or stands to lose it, not to mention for all of the undocumented aliens who receive it for free now and presumably will continue to in Obama health land, is almost laughable.
  21. Everybody knows I’m a Democrat.
  22. Moving is easy, exciting, an adventure – when you’re young. Later, not so much. I love Massachusetts, my old home. Sometimes, late at night, I even study the real estate ads in my old hometown. But it’s not even a fantasy. My parents are both gone. The world I left doesn’t exist anymore. Neither does the person I was.
  23. Being liked by the boys and girls on the bus doesn’t necessarily earn you the respect of the people back home. Standing up to them, giving as good as you get, all that helps.
  24. A lot of Republicans are white Christians, but the Republican Party is reaching out to Hispanics, and reaching out to blacks, and reaching out to Asians.
  25. In most presidential elections, the taller candidate wins.
  26. Gore will not win a popularity contest, he will not win a personality contest, but he can win an idealogical battle, and he can win a battle of experience.
  27. There were days when I hated politics. But I fought against hating the people on the other side because we were all in the same business – the business of building our country’s future.
  28. The Democratic chairman doesn’t need to be a household name. Most people didn’t know who Ron Brown was when he was chairman of the Democratic Party, but he put the party in a position where Bill Clinton could come in and he had a solid base to run from.
  29. My only concern is that the L.A. Times opinion pages, unfortunately like too many in this country, are dominated by men, and I’d like to see that change.
  30. So many of us had hoped that the civil system might be an alternative for some women, where the burdens were a little bit less, and cases might be easier to prove.
  31. This isn’t really a convention, This is really an infomercial. And every night we’ll have a different infomercial and people view it with a certain level of cynicism.
  32. In the first rule of politics, you know, Harry Truman, the buck stops here. Take responsibility. What I’ve learned over the years is that people will give people in politics a lot of rope if they just take responsibility.
  33. Prior to working for Fox, I worked for ABC and NBC, spent a lot of time at CNN, and almost ended up at CBS. I worked for a bunch of local stations in Los Angeles and had a talk-radio show at KABC for six years. In other words, I’m fortunate enough to have been around, and Fox News is the best place I’ve ever worked.
  34. Three times as many people watch Fox every day as watch CNN.
  35. I grew up when people were afraid to ‘come out’ as gay. If you asked me how many gay kids I grew up with or went to school with, I would have said none – which of course could not have been true. The truth is I have no idea how many confused and frightened kids I grew up with. They are still out there.
  36. Compared to being caught in the wrong body, being plagued by ‘dysmorphic OCD thoughts,’ being gay is commonplace and mostly accepted. What once seemed unimaginable and shameful has been revealed to be perfectly normal.
  37. If you’re responsible, and you’re willing to take responsibility, we’ll give you a pass.
  38. Getting one bill passed is close to impossible. Ask any kid who has spent a summer in Washington, or better yet a semester, and can’t understand how people tolerate its menu of constant frustration. Imagine mastering it.
  39. Why is it our business whether Sarah Palin returned to her job as governor three days after her son was born, or three months? Is there a right answer?
  40. I’m always suspicious of really beautiful women telling us we shouldn’t be worried about beauty.
  41. I don’t like cheap shots, I really don’t.
  42. I’ve been doing these conventions for 20 years, and we used to at least have debates about issues. Nothing is happening basically at this convention, other than speeches.
  43. I spend a lot of time thinking about this business of letting go – letting go of the children God gives to us for such a brief time before they go off on their own; letting go of old homes, old friends, old places and old dreams.
  44. But here’s my point to the LA Times. If you had a serious story to run, if you thought there was serious misconduct, you don’t wait until the Thursday before the Tuesday. You run it early.
  45. One of the risks of a public trial is a public verdict.
  46. I’ve come to expect the jabs at Fox News – because, being a liberal, I get more than most.
  47. Vice presidents are supposed to be eternally loyal, which is why it is so difficult for some to figure out how to succeed their bosses.
  48. Violent predators are not like the rest of us. They kill for fun, for sport, for the sake of it. To compare them to animals is an insult to animals. To expect that we can rehabilitate them assumes a will to change.
  49. I always tell my students: I don’t care which side you’re on. I respect you too much to try to persuade you in 120 minutes a week, much less lure you into pretending that you agree with me. All I want is for you to own this democracy, to see yours, to have a stake in it.
  50. I can’t begin to count how many times I have warned politicians and candidates to worry as much about the good coverage as the bad, because the more air they put in your balloon, the bigger the target when they start shooting.
  51. My women students openly admit that they dress for interviews like dates, hoping to look their best: makeup, high heels, a well-fitting suit that shows off their figure. And I always tell them to make sure to wear a shirt under the suit jacket. Form fitting, yes. Cleavage, no.
  52. Are Republican women politicians more ‘feminine’ than Democratic women politicians?
  53. Politics isn’t just about doing the right thing. It’s also about winning.
  54. When a father climbs a dangerous mountain and dies, we mourn. When a mother does, we question her judgment. How could she?
  55. People hate negative tactics, but the fact is, as the 3 A.M. ad demonstrates, they can be very effective.

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