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Notable New     Yorkers
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John B. OakesJohn B. Oakes
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naturally, candidates, I would talk this out with the publisher. And we really never had any disagreement at all. Or none that couldn't easily be worked out.

On this occasion, it was clear to me from things that Punch had been saying during the year that he was somewhat favorably - certainly much more favorably disposed to Moynihan that I had been. I did not like Moynihan. I didn't like his style. We'd been critical of some of the things he'd said in the U.N. I felt that Moynihan had been all over the lot of various issues - whether one talks about his famous “benign neglect” statement or other issues too. I felt that he was a very unreliable type who cut his politics to the opportunistic needs of the moment. And I was particularly outraged by the fact that he was considering running for the Senate after having stated very, very explicitly while he was in the U.N. that of course he would consider it a mark of dishonor to use his U.N. position, Ambassador of the United States to the United Nations, as a springboard for political office - which of course is precisely what he did use.

So I had said to Punch shortly before I went on vacation that I knew that he was somewhat more inclined for Moynihan than I. If I had to choose, I wasn't very keen about any of the candidates, but I certainly would pick Abzug over Moynihan.

Remember, this was a primary. A very important point. Because while I had always felt that the Times had to take a position in an election, I always had felt from the beginning that it was not necessary, except when we really wanted to do it, for the Times to take a position in a primary.

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