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"Top News" Continued...

Issue: "GOP: No room for error," Oct. 19, 2002


a storm after the calm

74 | Hurricane Lili killed no one and injured only two (see "What Lili left behind," p. 35). "We're so relieved with this storm, we don't know what to do," said Patricia McNeill, a nurse at a state shelter for the elderly in Lafayette, a town in Lili's path. "You just count your blessings." Even though it could have been worse, the storm was still serious. Around 350,000 people lost electricity, many more evacuated, and property damage blew quickly into the millions of dollars. The hurricane also forced a five-day postponement in the planned flight of the space shuttle Atlantis, which for the first time sent spectacular video of liftoff from a six-inch-long camera.


the waning weeks

71 | While Democrats relished their Torricelli turnabout in New Jersey-pinch-hitter Frank Lautenberg took over for the oh-for-2002 Sen. Bob Torricelli, who risked losing a seat for the Democrats-incumbent Democratic senators struggled in the Midwest. Topping the list is Sen. Paul Wellstone, who has trailed former St. Paul Mayor Norm Coleman in many polls for months in Minnesota. With another Gulf War in the wings, Republicans are reminding voters of the brand-new senator in 1991 who mounted the national stage and warned of thousands of body bags coming home. Now, with Sen. Wellstone calling for no war without United Nations approval, Mr. Coleman said, "This is not a question of the senator's patriotism. It is a question of his judgment." In Iowa, Sen. Tom Harkin was relieved that prosecutors found no laws were broken in the "Tapegate" incident, where a supporter taped a Sept. 3 strategy session by Republican opponent Greg Ganske and gave it to Harkin aides, who leaked a transcript to the media. After their latest debate, Sen. Harkin echoed a Clinton strategy by suggesting Mr. Ganske was more interested in scandal than the real-life effects of government aid to Iowans. In governor's races (see "Catch-23," p. 16), Pennsylvania Republicans privately joked of "pulling a Torricelli" and replacing their failing candidate. But, The Washington Post emphasized, it was only a joke.


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