ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL BOB DOLE depicts himself as the only man who can save the Grand Old Party from the divisive populism of Pat Buchanan. But Republican elders and lawmakers fear that Dole, the Senate leader and master tactician, is leaving them vulnerable back in Washington, where they stand to lose control of Congress if they don't post some legislative accomplishments--and fast.

Dole has declined to step down from the majority leader's post, which carries stature and affords him free television exposure as President Clinton's foil on Capitol Hill, and he refuses to delegate more authority to his top deputy,...

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