Bill Bradley deserves increased attention

While Al Gore seems like the favored Democratic presidential nominee because of his vice presidency, another Democratic candidate deserves consideration from both party members and leaders. Former Sen. Bill Bradley’s campaign is only now beginning to gain momentum, garnering recognition for the fact that he might be the better choice for Democrats.
Bradley is not closely affiliated to Clinton, a characteristic that appeals to many Democrat voters. Gore’s poor poll numbers can in part be attributed to his proximity to the Lewinsky scandal, and many voters, Democrats and otherwise, are eager to distance the nation from controversy. In addition, Bradley is the one candidate who seems committed to campaign finance reform, a key issue for many voters.
Few voters realize his other qualifications, however. Bradley graduated from Princeton and became a Rhodes Scholar, earning a reputation for studiousness and thoughtfulness. He played basketball on a gold-medal-winning Olympic basketball team and then for the New York Knicks, which won a NBA Championship title. He was then elected to serve as a senator representing New Jersey, a post he held for more than 16 years.
Bradley is the candidate to watch and not just for Democrats. His appeal could extend beyond the Democratic Party to voters who are disillusioned with recent scandals. His qualifications are certainly equal to those of the likely Republican nominee, George W. Bush, and his former career as a professional basketball player would create broad recognition and appeal. The Democratic Party should recognize that Bradley is qualified and appealing enough to beat Bush.