Some Clinton Backers Missing in Gore's List
Washington Post Staff Writers
Thursday, July 22, 1999; Page A14
Following the lead of Texas Gov. George W. Bush, Vice President Gore released the names of his $100,000 fund-raisers last night, a 25-member list notable for the absence of some of the high-powered Democrats who helped fuel President Clinton's victory in 1996.
Democrat Bill Bradley also named 22 top finance advisers, though the campaign said it has not kept track of how much money individuals have collected.
Gore, who raised $17.5 million in the first half of 1999, identified the "solicitors" who have brought in $100,000 -- fewer than a quarter of the 115 $100,000-level "Pioneers" who have helped raise $37 million for Bush.
The vice president's most successful fund-raisers are predominantly longtime friends and former aides, many of whom are successful lawyers and corporate executives. The list includes six Tennesseans and four Washingtonians, including Black Entertainment Television executive Robert Johnson; Ernst & Young executive Jeffrey Hirschberg; MCI WorldCom chief policy counsel Jonathan B. Sallet, a former Gore aide; and Nancy Zirkin, director of government relations for the American Association of University Women.
Political figures included New Jersey state Sen. Ray Lesniak and Puerto Rico Gov. Pedro Rossello. Viacom Inc.'s Sumner Redstone was by far the most prominent corporate chief.
Only one Californian -- entertainment executive Haim Saban -- has collected $100,000, according to the Gore campaign. Missing were Los Angeles moguls such as DreamWorks SKG co-founder David Geffen, grocery store magnate Eli Broad, movie executive Lew Wasserman and a collection of high-tech leaders that Gore has been wooing for years.
Dallas trial lawyer Fred Baron made the cut, but missing was Ohio attorney Stan Chesley, one of Clinton's most ardent supporters. New Jersey investor Orin Kramer hit the $100,000 mark, but New Yorkers Steven Rattner and Jonathan Tisch were noticeably absent. Washington powerhouse Dan Dutko was missing, along with New York's Noach Dear.
The list mystified even some of Gore's top supporters, who thought they were entitled to such credit. "I definitely raised $100,000 for the vice president," said one Californian who seemed disappointed he wasn't given credit. A Gore campaign official said last night that the campaign has a second tier of 22 "team leaders" who have also brought in large sums.
The Bradley campaign said it did not keep track of how much money its big fund-raisers have brought in. "We're not really as structured as the Pioneers," said Rick Wright, Bradley's national finance director.
Instead, Bradley released a list of 22 "advisory board" members who are helping guide the campaign's unexpectedly strong fund-raising, which has taken in about $11.5 million this year. The group includes CEOs such as Leonard Riggio of Barnes & Noble, Howard Schultz of Starbucks and Thomas G. Labrecque of Chase Manhattan; sports moguls such as San Diego Padres owner John J. Moores Jr. and Washington Wizards owner Abe Pollin; and Wall Street types such as Louis B. Susman of Salomon Brothers.
"A lot of the people, but not all of them, have produced a lot of money for the campaign," Wright said. "And by that I mean $75,000 or $100,000. But that's just a ballpark; we don't really do a scorecard."
Staff researcher Ben White contributed to this report.
© 1999 The Washington Post Company