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"Give "Competence" Another Try: This Time it Might Work"

Magazine or Newspaper Article, The Democratic Strategist, (A Journal of Public Opinion & Political Strategy)

June 2006

Author: Elaine Kamarck, Former Lecturer in Public Policy

Belfer Center Programs or Projects: International Security


"In the 1988 presidential election, Michael Dukakis was pilloried — rightly — for running a soulless campaign whose message consisted of the phrase, “It’s not about ideology, it’s about competence.” But times change. That was before the Federal Government’s response to Hurricane Katrina so overwhelmed us with its incompetence that America was humiliated before the world. The response to Katrina, however, was only the most dramatic in a long series of government failures, from the planning of the war in Iraq, to the failure of the occupation, to the design of the Medicare prescription drug policy...."


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For Academic Citation:

Kamarck, Elaine. "Give "Competence" Another Try: This Time it Might Work." The Democratic Strategist(A Journal of Public Opinion & Political Strategy), June 2006.

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