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Commentary :: Politics
BTL:Democrats at Boston Convention Prepare for Moderate and~
02 Aug 2004
~Cautious Election Campaign~Interview with John Nichols, Washington correspondent, The Nation magazine, conducted by Between the Lines' Scott Harris
Democrats at Boston Convention Prepare for Moderate and Cautious Election Campaign

Interview with John Nichols, Washington correspondent, The Nation magazine, conducted by Scott Harris

As thousands of Democratic Party delegates converged on Boston for their nominating convention, police put in place an extraordinary array of security measures across the city, including the closure of an interstate highway. Near the FleetCenter convention site, protesters were restricted to a so-called "free speech zone" that the federal judge presiding over the case challenging the controlled space, likened to an internment camp.

As has been the trend with both major political parties in recent years, their conventions are highly-scripted events with tight restrictions applied even to messages written on placards held by delegates. With the predictability and lack of dramatic news stories at today's conventions, broadcast television is devoting decreasing amounts of coverage. This year, the major networks will only air one hour of coverage on three of the four nights of both conventions.

While Democrats appear to be united in the campaign to defeat President Bush in November, the delegates who are gathered in Boston to nominate John Kerry as their candidate for the White House differ with the Massachusetts senator on some key issues. An overwhelming majority of delegates opposed the Iraq invasion from the beginning, unlike Kerry, who voted to give Bush the authority to launch the war. Between the Lines' Scott Harris spoke with John Nichols, Washington correspondent with The Nation magazine, who was in Boston covering the convention. He assesses the platform and strategy of the Democrats as they prepare for what many describe as the most important election in their lifetime.

Read John Nichols' columns in the pages of The Nation or online at

LISTEN to this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below:
"Between The Lines" is a half-hour syndicated radio news magazine that each week features a summary of under-reported news stories and interviews with activists and journalists who offer progressive perspectives on international, national and regional political, economic and social issues. Because "Between The Lines" is independent of all publications, media networks or political parties, we are able to bring a diversity of voices to the airwaves generally ignored or marginalized by the major media. For more information on this week's topics and to check out our text archive listing topics and guests presented in previous programs visit: httC://
"Between the Lines," WPKN 89.5 FM's weekly radio news magazine can be heard Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. ET; Wednesdays at 8 a.m. ET and Saturdays at 2 p.m. ET (Wednesday's show airs at 7:30 a.m. ET during fundraising months of April and October).
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Weekly Summary" which features a RealAudio link to the week's program for Between The Lines, send an email to btlsummary-subscribe (at)
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Q&A" which features a RealAudio link and weekly transcript to one of the interviews featured on Between The Lines, send an email to btlqa-subscribe (at)
betweenthelines (at)
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(c)2004 Squeaky Wheel Productions, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Copyright by the author. All rights reserved.
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