Sen. Robert J. Dole (R-Kan.) added White House pollster Richard Wirthlin to his presidential campaign staff yesterday. Wirthlin, who had joined the short-lived campaign of former senator Paul Laxalt (R-Nev.), said he will keep a lucrative contract conducting polls for the Republican National Committee, even though he has signed up with one of the presidential candidates. The contract, which pays $800,000 to $900,000 a year, primarily involves polling for President Reagan and testing public attitudes on major issues.
Wirthlin said his continued financial relationship with the RNC has been approved by the White House, and has been given the tentative backing of presidential campaigns competing with Dole. The material from the RNC polls will be shared with all the GOP candidates, he said.
Although Wirthlin's contract is among the biggest of any consultant working for the RNC, almost all the major GOP campaigns have staffers and strategists who are also beneficiaries of contracts with the RNC.
The Dole campaign looks like it's close to signing Washington-based media consultant Don Ringe to produce the campaign's advertising. Ringe is a protege of Stuart Spencer, and has worked for Republicans in gubernatorial and Senate races, but never before for a presidential candidate.END NOTES