No doubt about it, Vice President Al Gore has a rough challenge as he seeks the presidency in distancing himself from President Clinton's personal standards.

Nobody's accusing Gore of having the same kind of problem controlling his libido that Clinton evidenced. But Gore is damned pretty much however he handles the presidential sex scandal. If he ignores the subject, people consciously or unconsciously question his own standards. If he overtly distances himself from Clinton, as he did on TV, he looks disloyal or tardily self-righteous or both - and people question his standards anyway.And every time he talks about morality or ethics, it just reminds Americans of Clinton's unfortunate pledge to give the nation its ''most ethical administration.''

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