With 19 months remaining before the election, Republican presidential hopefuls have already raised more than $4 million for the 1980 campaign, according to financial reports made public this week.
For sheer fund-raising speed, however, none of the Republicans was a match for President Carter, who has taken in $305,000 since he formally launched his reelection campaign just two weeks ago.
Reports filed by Carter and several of his GOP challengers show that the oil and gas industry has been particularly generous, with major oil contributions going to Carter and to two Texas Republicans, John Connally and George Bush.
The reports also show that individual contributors run the gamut from captains of industry and political appointees to some Chinese waiters in Chicago who are backing Carter and a high school boy in Dallas who is listed as contributing $1,000 to Bush.
The leader in the campaign finance sweepstakes so far is Republican Philip Crane, the conservative Illinois congressman who has used a polished directmail effort to raise about $1.7 million over the past eight months.
Connally, a former treasury secretary and once governor of Texas, has raised $1.2 million since he declared his candidacy 21/2 months ago. Bush, a former U.N. ambassador and ex-CIA director, reported receipts of $663,000. Former California governor Ronald Reagan reported $527,000; Sen. Bob Dale (R Kan.) $48,000 and Sen. Howard H. Baker Jr. (R-Tenn.) $45,000. Other Republican hopefuls have not complied totals yet.
Most of the candidates have raised the bulk of their monty from large contributors-those giving more than $100-but Crane is an exception to this rule. About 83 percent of his funds have come in smaller checks from some 70,000 respondents to the flood of fund-raising letters he has sent out to selected mailing lists around the nation.
Crane has spent nearly a million dollars on fund raising, most of it in fees to his direct-mail wizard, Richard A. Viguerie, of Falls Church. The Crane effort has also run up enormous postage bills, and a debt of $92,000 just for envelopes in the first three months of this year.
But while Crane has spent more money than other candidates on fund raising, he has provided the sloppiest reporting of any of the other hopefuls.
Federal law requiries candidates to list the place of work and occupation of all contributors giving more than $100. Most candidates comply with this rule about 90 percent of the time. Crane's reports give the information for fewer than half of the major contributors.
Bush's contributions include at least $50,000 from individuals connected to the oil industry, and $40,000 from contributors involved in banking or securities operations. Bush also received donations from Henry Ford II, Peter Stroh and George Weyerhauser, executives of the automotive, brewing and timber corporations that bear their names.
Ten different memebers of one Texas family, all relatives of Dallas investor Trammel Crow, each gave Bush $1,000, the highest legal individual contribution.Among the listed $1,000 donors was Stuart Crow, a high school student who is Trammel Crow's son.
Oil and gas interest contributions were most evident in the campaign of John Connally. At least 200 people, who clearly identified themselves as executives of oil companies, natural gas firms or drilling concerns, gave more than $130,000 to the campaign, more than 10 per cent of its total receipts.
Winton M. Blount, Connally's campaign chairman, said that much of the candidate's early money had been raised in his home state-"from Texas people. And a lot of Texas people are in the oil business."
"We do have a broad spectrum of support," Blount told a reporter. "The average contribution-with over 10,000 people contributing-was $133."
The Connally campaign also boasted donations from dozens of top executives of some of the country's largest companies: Armco Steel, Mobil Oil, Standard Oil, Frito-Lay, Pepsico, Eaton Copr., Dr. Pepper and Lockheed.The chairman of the Southland Corp. is head of Connally's finance committee.
The Carter campaign's $305,000 appeared to reflect a broader geographical distribution, though Georgia, Florida and Texas residents were the most generous.
Oil and gas company executives who could be immediately identified contributed roughly $18,000 in Carter's early fund-raising efforst.
In addition, at least nine executives of the North-west Pipeline Co. gave a total of about $2,500 in contributions to the Carter campaign.
That firm, which operates the Alaska oil pipeline, also contributed $5,000 to the Mideast peace treaty dinner, which the Carter administration financed with a collection from corporate executives.
The Carter campaign has yet to begin an organized fund-raising drive, according to campaign treasurer John Dalton, though direct mail efforts are planned for the future.
One unusual aspect of Carter's report was the presence of numerous Chinese surnamed contributions, from Chicago, New York and Hawaii, and at least five or six proprietors of Chinese restaurants and several waiters.
Dalton suggested that perhaps the normalization of relations with China may be responsible for this phenomena.
Several restaurant proprietors interviewed seemed less certain. "I don't remember," was the answer provided by Thomas Dare, manager of the Dang Ho Restaurant in Chicago when asked why he gave $250. He also said he didn't know why two of his waiters contributed $250 each to the campaign.
Much of Carter's money, Dalton suggested, came as a result of individual efforst by Carter supporters who were ready to go at the time the Carter committee filed and from out-of-town orangizational gatherings attended by top Carter campaign official's including Dalton.
Carter campaign spending was much slower than the others. Carter has spend about $15,000, according to the reports, mostly on routine office needs.
Connally has spent $731,000 including large payments to political consultants and heavy expenditures for fund-raising drives. The Connally campaign according to its report, has spent over $40,000 on office furniture alone.
Reagan, Dole and Baker aides told reporters their total receipts to date, but have not filed detailed reports of contributions and expenditures.