In June 1976, Jimmy Carter promised the nation’s mayors a “compassionate, realistic” urban policy. Although the President has yet to elaborate his vision of a revitalized urban America, enough has been said and done during the campaign, the transition, and the first two months in office to illuminate the new Administration’s balance between realism and compassion in the foreseeable future.
Campaigning last April, Mr. Carter made aid to the cities dependent upon spending for national defense as a first priority. Three months later, he softened that stand; he endorsed the mayors’ plank in the Democratic platform declaring the “social defense of the nation as important as its military defense.̶...
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