California: Parkinson's Law

In hopes of damping down the perennial feud between California's Republican moderates and conservatives—and thus lessening Democratic Governor Pat Brown's third-term prospects—State G.O.P. Chairman Gaylord Parkinson last fall handed the troops an Eleventh Commandment. "Thou shall not speak ill of any Republican," he ruled, and to everyone's surprise, Parkinson's law became holy writ.

As the June 7 primary neared, Actor Ronald Reagan, a fervent supporter of Barry Goldwater in 1964, and San Francisco's longtime (1956-64) Mayor George Christopher, an equally outspoken champion of Nelson Rockefeller in the same campaign, had hardly...

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