The Debates Begin

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MANCHESTER, NEW HAMPSHIRE: Despite the distractions, Buchanan forged ahead with new attacks on Dole in preparation for a debate scheduled to begin at 8 pm E.S.T. "The time for your old politics is over, Bob," Buchanan said during the taping of new TV spots. "America needs a leader who says what he means and means what he says." Buchanan was stung by a new series of Dole adds painting Buchanan's views as too extreme. Dole had in fact embraced many of Buchanan's positions Tuesday in a speech decrying corporate greed and wage stagnation. "Buchanan will accuse Dole of stealing his ideas if he mentions them in the debate," Burleigh notes. Meanwhile, Lamar Alexander sought to position himself as the sensible moderate alternative between Dole and Buchanan. He told reporters that he hoped to convince GOP voters that he would have the broadest appeal and is the one man "most likely to be able to beat Bill Clinton." Alexander also took a swipe at Buchanan, charging that his protectionist trade policies would lower the U.S. standard of living. Steve Forbes for his part will try to move away from the confrontational attack ads that backfired in Iowa. "I'm going to concentrate on getting my own message across," Forbes told reporters. "Clearly we spent too much time discussing the record of our opponents. I'm not going to worry about them anymore."