George Bush basked in the warmth of a post-convention poll showing him ahead of Democrat Michael Dukakis but continued to feel the heat over running mate Dan Quayle and his military record.
Dukakis, meanwhile, met Monday at his home with CIA Director William Webster and other lawmakers and officials involved in intelligence for a briefing on national security and foreign affairs.Bush and Dukakis carried out long-distance attacks on foreign policy and defense, but the debate was drowned out by the noise over Bush's vice presidential choice.
In the first survey done entirely after the end of last week's Republican National Convention, Bush and Quayle led Dukakis and his running mate, Sen. Lloyd Bentsen of Texas, by 46 percent to 40 percent.
The CBS News poll of 1,221 registered voters across the country had a margin of error of 3 percentage points. Candidates typically receive a boost in the polls after their party's convention.
But half the respondents did not believe Quayle, 41, has the experience to be a good president, and 28 percent were unsure. Thirty-nine percent wished Bush had chosen someone else.
Quayle, facing questions about whether he used his wealthy family's connections to enter the National Guard and avoid being drafted into combat in Vietnam, found a split jury in the poll.
Forty percent said phone calls made to the guard on his behalf represented "an unfair attempt" to ease his admission; 40 percent said such calls were acceptable and 20 percent were unsure.
Reservations about Quayle were also expressed Monday by Bush supporters, although they rejected suggestions he be dropped from the ticket.
"I think Quayle should assess and if he feels like he's hurting the ticket, he ought to be man enough to step aside," Tommy Thomas, chairman of the Bush steering committee in Florida, said Monday.
"I want to get to know a lot more about him," said New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean, who delivered the keynote at last week's convention in New Orleans.