Politics: Enter Babbitt, Repeatedly

Enter Babbitt, Repeatedly

Technically, the announcement was unnecessary; in legal terms, Bruce Babbitt has been a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination since he filed papers with the Federal Election Commission on Jan. 7. Politically, it was essential; what the former Arizona Governor needs most is publicity. So last week Babbitt, 48, declared his candidacy -- three times -- with speeches in (where else?) New Hampshire and Iowa and a press conference in Washington.

Babbitt's best chance to win some attention is with lively ideas. His theme is "dare to be different," and he advocates, among other things, taxing the Social Security benefits of...