DEMOCRATS . . . MODERATES PUT CLINTON ON NOTICE

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The Democratic Leadership Council -- a centrist group that President Clinton helped start while a governor, then used as a springboard to the presidency -- today warned that many American voters see him as a big-government liberal and not the "New Democrat" he campaigned as in 1992. The evidence? Clinton's own pollster, Stan Greenberg, ran a national poll and focus-group interviews for the DLC right after the midterm elections. The results: More than half of the growing bloc of independent voters --- who now make up 30 percent of the electorate -- clearly repudiated the Democrats and Clinton's term so far -- even as they fell short of handing Republicans a mandate. Ironically, the last straw for many was Clinton's signature health care package, which they viewed as a big-government fiasco. "It is impossible to underestimate the amount of damage that health care bill did in shaping Bill Clinton as a big-government proponent," said DLC President Al From, who said Clinton should view the results as a "two-by-four between the eyes." BTW: Greenberg's research wasn't all bad news for Clinton: 68 percent said they were "still hopeful that Clinton can succeed."Post your opinion on theWashingtonbulletin board.