By Kent Larsen
While Republican Are Weaker, Hatch May Have Larger Role
WASHINGTON, DC -- Regardless of how the presidential race is resolved, the
US Republican party will be weaker in the US Senate because of its slim
majority. At best, Republicans will have a 2 seat margin with which to run
the Senate. But even in this closely-divided situation, Utah Republican
Orrin Hatch, an LDS Church member, will likely wield significant power, and
may have a crucial role.
Since the Republicans will still retain control, regardless of the final
outcome of the elections, Hatch is likely to remain chairman of the powerful
Senate Judiciary committee. But despite his reputation nationally as a
conservative, Hatch's reputation in the Senate is cooperative. And his
length of service in the Senate and friendship with powerful Democratic
Senator Edward Kennedy give him the connections to play an important role.
The current issue of Newsweek recognizes this possibility. In order to get
any legislation passed, the new administration, regardless of the party it
represents, will need to work with members of the other party to pass
legislation. Newsweek's Howard Fineman suggests that with a Democratic
administration, the leadership will have to look to certain key Senators for
help getting legislation passed. Fineman names both Utah's Senators, Bob
Bennett and Hatch, as likely allies to the Democrats, depending on the issue.
Making the Best of It
Newsweek (MSNBC) 27Nov00 T2
By Howard Fineman: Newsweek