Copyright 1995 Globe Newspaper Company
The Boston Globe
April 30, 1995, Sunday, City Edition
SECTION: FOCUS; Pg. 76
LENGTH: 1218 words
HEADLINE: Focus on: 4/23-4/29; Continuing shock waves from Oklahoma City; a Supreme Court turnaround; Ginger reunited with Fred; World; FRENCH UPSET
The results of last Sunday's presidential election in France left pollsters confounded. Socialist candidate Lionel Jospin, who was seen by some observers as struggling to make it into May 7's runoff election, finished first with 23.3 percent of the vote, the lowest share for a winner in recent history. "I must admit it: This result surprised all of us a bit," Jospin said. Opposing him in the contest to succeed President Francois Mitterand will be Paris Mayor Jacques Chirac, whom polls predicted would finish first in this, his third run for the presidency. Finishing third was conservative Premier Edouard Balladur, whom Chirac edged out by just under 2 percentage points. A record 15 percent vote for far-right, anti-immigrant candidate Jean-Marie Le Pen indicated anger and uncertainty among the country's 40 million voters. Nation BEYOND THE BOMBING; FAREWELL TO A SENATE STALWART; REASSERTING SUPREME COURT POWER
Last Sunday was a national day of mourning for the victims of the April 19 bombing of a federal office building in Oklahoma City. President Clinton attended a memorial service there and called for broad new powers to combat terrorism. Civil libertarians expressed concerns about possible curtailment of constitutional rights. On Monday, the court-appointed lawyer for accused bomber Timothy J. McVeigh asked to be removed from the case, saying he could not provide an adequate defense because a friend had died in the blast. As the investigation continued, the city and the nation paused to observe a moment of silence at 9:02 a.m. on Wednesday - precisely one week after the blast. Bells rang, tears flowed and heads bowed as searchers stood amid the ruins of the collapsed building. The death toll stands at more than a hundred, with many remaining missing.
In a bitterly divided 5-to-4 ruling, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that Congress had exceeded its constitutional authority when it passed a law in 1990 banning possession of a gun within 1,000 feet of a school. Making the decision significant was its being the first time since 1936 that the court had overturned a federal law on the grounds that it exceeded the congressional commerce authority. The decision is likely to inspire legal challenges to other gun-control statutes and, on a broader scale, signifies a marked departure from the court's lenient view over the past six decades of the legislative branch's authority to regulate commerce.
John C. Stennis, a Mississippi Democrat who recorded the second-longest tenure as a US senator, died last Sunday of pneumonia. He was 93. During 41 years in the Senate, Stennis earned a reputation for fairness and finesse that landed him delicate committee assignments and close associations with eight US presidents. As chairman of both the Senate Armed Services Committee and the defense subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee in the 1970s, Stennis wielded more clout over military matters than perhaps any civilian but the president. Business STOP & SHOP WENT SHOPPING; THE GOVERNMENT SUED MICROSOFT
On Monday, the Stop & Shop grocery chain announced it would purchase Purity Supreme supermarkets. The $ 255 million deal would create Massachusetts' leading supermarket chain, with nearly a quarter market share in the state, more than double the share of Shaw's Supermarkets, the next leading chain. Stop & Shop currently owns 128 stores in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island and New York. Purity currently has 55 supermarkets in Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Hampshire, as well as 66 Li'l Peach convenience stores. The deal is expected to be completed this summer, once government antitrust concerns have been satisfied.
Such concerns were not satisfied last week by Microsoft Corp. Saying it "would likely lead to higher prices and lessened innovation" in the growing market for personal-finance programs, the Justice Department's antitrust division announced Thursday it would attempt to block the $ 2 billion acquisition of Intuit Inc. by the software giant. Intuit is the maker of the leading personal-finance software program, Quicken, which last year held a 70 percent market share. Microsoft and Intuit said they would contest the suit. Living/Arts DANCING IN THE DARK
Ginger Rogers, whose song-and-dance partnership with Fred Astaire brought the movie musical to unrivaled heights, died Tuesday. She was 83. Rogers appeared in 72 films, 10 with Astaire. Their teaming began with "Flying Down to Rio" (1933) and ended with "The Barkleys of Broadway" (1949). Rogers won the 1940 Academy Award for best actress for "Kitty Foyle." Among her best-known films are "Top Hat" (1935), regarded by many as the finest Astaire-Rogers musical, "Stage Door" (1937) and "The Major and the Minor" (1942). In 1988, President Reagan noted the unfairness of his friend Rogers being regarded as the lesser half in one of Hollywood's most fabled duos. "Her male counterpart got the lion's share of publicity," Reagan said, "but Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did and did it with high heels on and did it backwards." Sports THE MAN YOU LOVED TO HATE
Sportscaster Howard Cosell, whose distinctive style made him one of America's most popular and unpopular broadcasters, died last Sunday of a heart embolism. He was 77. A lawyer-turned-journalist, entertainer and provocateur, he delivered his commentary in a distinctive nasal twang peppered with polysyllabic words. His presence helped make ABC's "Monday Night Football" a broadcast institution, and his support for Muhammad Ali when he refused induction into the Army during the Vietnam War and was stripped of his heavyweight title added a new dimension to sports journalism. Cosell prided himself on his bringing the real world into sports. Said ABC'S Al Michaels, "His dream would have been to go on the air for an hour, without any notes, and tell us what was on his mind." In their own words
On Monday, the Unabomber struck again, killing the chief lobbyist for the California Forest Association in Sacramento. It was the 16th letter bomb he's sent in 17 years. That same day, The New York Times received a letter from him. As indicated by the police artist's sketch below, investigators believe the Unabomber to be a single white man in his 40s, though he used the first-person plural in the letter. Excerpts from his letter follow. "The FBI has tried to portray these bombings as the work of an isolated nut. We won't waste our time arguing about whether we are nuts, but we certainly are not isolated. For security reasons we won't reveal the number of members of our group, but anyone who will read the anarchist and radical environmentalist journals will see that opposition to the industrial-technological system is widespread and growing.
. . . We expect to be able to pack deadly bombs into ever smaller, lighter and more harmless looking packages. On the other hand, we believe we will be able to make bombs much bigger than any we've made before. With a briefcase-full or a suitcase-full of explosives we should be able to blow out the walls of substantial buildings.
Clearly we are in a position to do a great deal of damage. And it doesn't appear that the FBI is going to catch us any time soon. The FBI is a joke."
GRAPHIC: PHOTO, 1. Jospin 2. Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire