Presidential candidates Bob Dole and Paul Simon were big winners in the end-of-the-year fund-raising sweepstakes, according to figures released Wednesday by their campaigns.
Dole, a Republican senator from Kansas, raised $6.75 million in the last three months of the year, passing Vice President George Bush in quarterly money-raising for the first time. Overall, Bush has raised $18.7 million and Dole $14.3 million, their campaigns report.
Democrat Simon, buoyed by a rise in the polls late this fall, doubled his 1987 fund-raising total in the fourth quarter, from $2 million in September to more than $4 million at year’s end, putting him in the top financial tier among Democratic candidates. The success was a surprise to several rival campaigns and a major advance for Simon, who had been dogged by rumors of fund-raising problems.
The Illinois senator, however, continues to lag behind the Democratic fund-raising champion, Massachusetts Gov. Michael S. Dukakis, who raised $2.5 million in the last three months of the year, boosting his 1987 total to $10.5 million.
Meanwhile, the resurgent Democratic campaign of Gary Hart ran into more problems Wednesday as another of the many firms owed money from Hart’s 1984 campaign obtained a court order to seize federal matching funds that his 1988 campaign is expecting.
Culver City Ad Agency
Semper-Moser Associates, a Culver City advertising agency, is the second creditor to get a court order allowing seizure of the funds. Xerox Corp. took similar action earlier in the week.
Semper-Moser handled political advertising for Hart in 1984 and last year won a court judgment for $162,754.57 against the 1984 campaign committee. Xerox in July won a similar judgment for $10,480.43.
Hart’s campaign Wednesday had no comment on the creditors’ actions, but his lawyers consistently have argued that money belonging to the 1988 campaign cannot be used to pay 1984 debts because the two campaign committees are separate legal entities. The FEC, which voted earlier this week to give Hart $100,000 as a first installment on his matching funds, has not yet determined how to respond to the court orders, a spokesman said.
The FEC Wednesday released its year-end list of matching fund awards to 12 presidential aspirants. The only candidate who has not yet been approved to get federal aid is the Rev. Jesse Jackson, whose campaign has not passed FEC audits. Jackson’s staff had told FEC officials that additional documents the commission had asked for would be submitted Wednesday, but by the end of the day the documents had not been delivered.
One of the 12 whose funds have been approved, former TV evangelist Pat Robertson, may decide not to accept the money and the spending restrictions that come with it. Robertson would be eligible for $4.5 million, but his lawyer wrote to the FEC earlier this week and said the campaign had not yet determined whether to take the money.
The federal money, which comes from the $1 check-off on individual income tax returns, matches all contributions of $250 or less that campaigns get from individuals. Candidates who receive federal money must abide by limits on their spending and must submit their financial records and contributor lists to FEC auditors. The campaigns will begin receiving the money from the federal Treasury next week.
Dukakis Tops Democrats
The grants approved so far range from $5.8 million for Bush and $4.3 million for Dole down to Hart’s $100,000 and $275,000 for Republican candidate Alexander M. Haig Jr. The largest award to any of the Democrats will be $3.5 million to Dukakis, the third-largest amount overall.
While success in the polls boosted Simon’s end-of-the-year fund raising, the polls may have hurt two of his rivals. Sen. Albert Gore Jr. of Tennessee raised only $1.1 million in the fourth quarter, bringing his year-end total to $3.8 million. Rep. Richard A. Gephardt of Missouri raised roughly $1.2 million in the last quarter, ending up with about $4.4 million for the year.
Former Arizona Gov. Bruce Babbitt’s campaign reported raising $356,000 in the fourth quarter, for a year-end total of $1.8 million.
Gore, Gephardt and Simon will each receive about $1.5 million in matching funds. Babbitt will receive about $720,000.
On the Republican side, the awards to Bush and Dole and the potential award to Robertson are followed by roughly $3 million to Rep. Jack Kemp of New York and $1.9 million to former Delaware Gov. Pierre S. (Pete) du Pont IV. Kemp’s campaign has raised $7.5 million so far this year, including roughly $2.2 million in the fourth quarter, campaign spokesman John Buckley said.