Firing another salvo in an escalating war of words, William J. Bennett, the administration's drug policy adviser, took aim at two of New York's top Democrats yesterday, dismissing Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan's remarks as "bilious" and saying New York's governor is no "sacred Cuomo."
"They should be doing better in New York," Bennett said of Gov. Mario M. Cuomo's efforts to fight drug trafficking, States News Service reported.
Bennett criticized Cuomo last week, prompting Moynihan to attack the director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy for using his office for political purposes.
"This is turning into a typical New York altercation," Bennett shot back yesterday. "But it has a typical Moynihan twist -- bilious, dyspeptic, orotund -- he knows what all those words mean, too."
Defending his right to criticize Cuomo, Bennett said, "We are not dealing with sacred cows or sacred C-u-o-m-o-s . . . Mario Cuomo is in this business like the rest of us."
The dispute over drug policy comes as Senate Democrats try to end a filibuster on major anticrime legislation. Bennett joined a coalition of Republican lawmakers yesterday to unveil a Bush-backed crime bill that omits the Senate bill's controversial ban on assault weapons.