POLITICS: The Durable Issue

He was a one-issue man, some once said, and his candidacy would fade the moment President Nixon carried out his 1968 campaign pledge to end U.S. involvement in the nation's longest war. But as U.S. bombs smashed into targets near Haiphong and Hanoi and Communist MIGs attacked American warships, Viet Nam was still very much alive as a national issue—and so were the presidential nomination hopes of South Dakota Senator George McGovern.

The one-issue label had never been quite accurate; he has long been far more than that. Indeed his position papers on tax reform and defense spending are the...

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