Has Dole been "Trainspotting'?

Published Oct. 6, 1996|Updated Sept. 16, 2005

What's this? Now Bob Dole is endorsing the soundtrack to the movie Trainspotting, the film he railed against for supposedly glorifying drug use?

Not so, says Dole's spokesman, who worries that a new advertisement may confuse people into thinking the presidential candidate advocates the movie.

The ad is "glib and whimsical" and implies that Dole has endorsed the movie soundtrack, campaign spokesman Nelson Warfield chides in a news release.

The ad itself, however, leaves little doubt that it is intended as satire.

In it, a beaming Dole wears an "Iggy Pop for President" pin on his lapel. A line at the bottom of the ad states, "Listen and choose . . . or you could just stay home and watch the Brooklyn Dodgers," a not-so-subtle jab at Dole's recent blunder.

Dole still has not seen the film. The makers of Trainspotting have said they don't understand the flak over the movie, which was intended to show the horrors of heroin use.

Judge Barkett's profile in courage

Rosemary Barkett, the much-maligned former justice on the Florida Supreme Court, is starring in a new video about judges who are, well, much-maligned.

Profiles in Judicial Courage was created by the Alliance for Justice, a Washington group of legal advocates who specialize in poverty, education, consumer safety, the environment and women's rights.

The video will be shown at more than 150 law schools Monday to commemorate First Monday, an annual event in the legal community to mark the opening of the U.S. Supreme Court's new term.

Barkett, who was elevated by President Clinton to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, faced an organized attack in 1992 for upholding abortion rights, overturning some death penalty cases and ruling against forced-feeding for patients who were permanently incapacitated.

Florida voters kept her on the Supreme Court. But the same charges were raised again in the U.S. Senate when she was confirmed to the 11th Circuit in 1994.

Among the other judges in the 30-minute documentary are William Dyer, who protected the spotted owl, and William Wayne Justice, who wouldn't let Texas kick illegal immigrant children out of school. Justice also got threats and hate mail for ordering desegregation of the Tyler, Texas, schools.

Relief for veterans' widows

Widows of recently deceased veterans will gain some financial relief under new legislation.

The measure, introduced by Rep. Mike Bilirakis, R-Palm Harbor, allows widows to keep the disability checks issued the month in which their spouse dies. Currently, they must return them.

"This small sacrifice can make a huge difference for the spouse of a veteran who might be without income for a month because her husband died a few hours too soon," Bilirakis said.

The Congressional Budget Office predicts the measure will affect about 95,000 people each year.

Both the House and Senate have approved the measure, and the president is expected to sign it.

GOP spin doctor? It's Sen. Mack

Sen. Connie Mack flies to Hartford, Conn., today as part of the GOP post-debate spin team. He will be joined by Arizona Sen. John McCain, Connecticut's congressional Republicans and a handful of prominent governors. Their job: Talk up what a great job Dole did in the first of two debates.

Mack will then head south to do the same in St. Petersburg on Wednesday when his longtime friend and political mentor, Jack Kemp, goes against Vice President Al Gore.

Last week, Mack spent a day escorting Kemp around Florida, introducing the man who beat him out for the No.

2 spot on the Republican ticket.

"He is a man of passion, of enthusiasm, of excitement, of energy and optimism," Mack said at rally in Jacksonville.

Kemp promised the audience that Mack could be treasury secretary in a Dole-Kemp administration _ "or whatever he wants."

_ Times staff writers Ceci Connolly, Ellen Debenport and Katherine Gazella contributed to this report.