WASHINGTON--It's Clinton by a landslide--at least in terms of which campaign staff did a better job in lining up scientists and engineers behind their man.
On 30 October Scientists and Engineers for Clinton/Gore rolled out a list of more than 500 researchers and policy-makers--including 14 Nobelists--who want the president to serve a second term. In contrast, a spokesman for the Dole/Kemp campaign says that "a couple of dozen" scientists have been folded into a larger database labeled "Educators for Dole/Kemp" but that it's "impossible'' to tease out their names.
Why the discrepancy? The power of incumbency is certainly a factor. "I volunteered my name because the White House has made a commitment to keep the U.S. in the forefront of all fields of science and because of the  conference on basic science," says physicist Daniel Kleppner of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. "It's a way of acknowledging my gratitude for what they have done."
Tapping scientists also seems to be a higher priority in the Clinton campaign, which has a person working full-time on the outreach effort. Dole's efforts, by comparison, seem haphazard; it took the campaign a full week to reply to a reporter's inquiry about such a list, and several Dole staffers gave contradictory answers.
William Nierenberg, director emeritus of Scripps Institution of Oceanography and an adviser to the Dole/Kemp campaign, contends that voters aren't swayed by such endorsements. But a list, he says, can be a good starting point for filling posts in the next administration. Using that criterion, the former senator from Kansas will have a lot of catching up to do on personnel matters if he is able to pull off an upset victory on Tuesday.