Seeking to Erase '84 Debt, Hart Finance Chief Plans Cross-Country Fund-Raisers
Sen. Gary Hart (D-Colo.) has whittled his 1984 presidential campaign debt from $5 million to $3 million. But sometimes the candidate who created the debt is not the best one to pay it off.
Jim Barrett, an Oklahoma oil millionaire and Hart's national finance chairman, is taking matters into his own hands, figuring that those who make a lot of money can raise a lot of money.
Barrett, along with two other Hart fund-raisers, Texas oilman Don Montgomery and California developer David Stein, plans a two-week, 22-stop cross-country fund-raising tour in mid-May. They intend to meet with 60 key contributors, most of whom have already "maxed out," or given the $1,000 limit to Hart, asking them to turn up new contributors.
Barrett optimistically thinks that they can raise enough to pay off the debt by July. Asked if $3 million isn't a steep goal, Barrett replied: "It's only $50,000 a person." Bush's PAC Brimming With Cash
On the other hand, the till is full at The Fund for America's Future, Vice President Bush's political action committee (PAC). The PAC is only a year old and has raised a record $8 million. A spokesman said the PAC expects to hold its last fund-raiser May 22 in Boston.
It's unheard of for a PAC to suspend its fund-raising activities in the middle of an election year but the spokesman explained that it has plenty of money to distribute to Republican candidates. He also acknowledged that the fund does not want to compete with candidates' fund-raising efforts. GOP Paid Out $8.6 Million in Off Year
The three Republican national committees paid more than $8.6 million to political consultants, fund-raisers and pollsters in 1985, even though it was not an election year, according to a survey of Federal Election Commission records by the National Journal. The payments by the Republican National Committee (RNC), the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) and the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) went to 40 firms.
The top recipients were the GOP's three leading pollsters. Richard B. Wirthlin's Decision/Making/Information Inc. received a total of $1,228,281 from the three committees, followed by Robert M. Teeter's Market Opinion Research Corp., which got $921,028, and (Lance V.) Tarrance Associates Inc., with $434,352. The consulting firm of Black, Manafort, Stone & Atwater, whose members are advising three presidential hopefuls, Bush, Rep. Jack Kemp (R-N.Y.) and Sen. Robert J. Dole (R-Kan.), was 11th on the list with $169,017.
The RNC paid $1.6 million to consultants and $1.2 million for polls. The NRSC spent $2.2 million on consultants and $1.1 million on polls and the NRCC spent about $2 million on consultants and $521,000 on polls. The sums accounted for 7.1 percent of the RNC's total expenditures, 10.6 percent of the Senate committee's and 14.6 percent of the House committee's. LaRouche Nomination by Default Blunted
The followers of Lyndon H. LaRouche Jr. continue to make trouble for the Democratic Party, most recently in South Carolina. Just 40 minutes before filings closed Wednesday, Roy Blake Fairchild, a LaRouche supporter, walked into Democratic headquarters in Columbia and became the only challenger to Rep. Floyd D. Spence (R-S.C.).
After frantic phone calls to the state capitol failed to turn up another candidate, Democratic executive director Fred Ziegler decided he had to enter the race himself, "in order to avoid tainting the whole ticket." Bush Bested by Kemp and Two Others
In his continuing efforts to woo the right, Bush recently spoke to the annual convention of the National Association of Evangelicals, which has a membership of 4.5 million. In a straw poll that evening, Bush received his reward: He placed fourth with 12 percent. Kemp, who didn't appear, was first with 41 percent and Sen. William L. Armstrong (R-Colo.), who spoke the next day, was second with 21 percent. Evangelist Marion G. (Pat) Robertson came in third with 15 percent.
Bush plans to forgo an opportunity to court another conservative group next month. He has canceled an appearance before the National Right to Life convention in Denver in order to make an official visit to Canada.
When asked whether Bush was concerned about canceling out on such a key constituency when other potential Republican presidential contenders plan to be there, a spokesman said Bush's "position on abortion is clear." In Canada, Bush will be discussing acid rain. Polls
In the South Dakota Senate race, Rep. Thomas A. Daschle (D) leads both of his potential Republican opponents, according to a poll taken for his campaign by Information Associates. Daschle leads Sen. James Abdnor (R) by 48 to 35 percent. Against retiring Gov. William J. Janklow, who is challenging Abdnor in the Republican primary, Daschle leads by 48 to 36 percent. The poll of 500 voters was taken April 22-27.
The Republican primary battle and the state's farm economy may be contributing to Daschle's lead. Asked whether the Reagan administration's policies help or hurt farmers, 59 percent said they hurt, 6 percent said they help and 17 percent said they made no difference.