Campaign 2000: The Dangers of Being Specific

The seeds of a candidate's demise can often be found in the details of his own policies. As George W. Bush discovered last week, there is no surer way to invite a scathing attack than to spell out in detail what you plan to do. And Bush didn't even do that, really. When he committed himself to partly privatizing Social Security, he blurred the details but committed heresy. Bush's plan, Gore warned grimly, would "put the retirement income of American workers at risk."

By revealing some of his thoughts on Social Security reform, Bush succumbed to the journalists and voters who...

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