Nation: A New Publius

Circulating among Government departments in Washington is a 19-page treatise called "New Federalist Paper No. 1, by Publius." Two centuries ago, "Publius" was Hamilton. Madison and Jay, whose collective prose, "written in Favour of the New Constitution," became a classic catechism of the American democracy. The Nixonian Publius is White House Speechwriter William Safire, a longtime G.O.P. public relations consultant.

"We like the blessings of central government," writes the new Publius. "We also like the blessing of decentralization, or home rule. Many have spent the past year working out a synthesis of the most desirable in both central government and home rule....

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