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Perot Spent $56 Million of Own, $4.5 Million in Loans on Race

Associated Press

Texas billionaire Ross Perot bankrolled the final leg of his presidential campaign in part with loans after spending more than $56 million of his own money with no expectation of being repaid, reports showed Friday.

Perot listed more than $4.5 million of the $13.9 million he directed to his campaign between Oct. 15 and Nov. 23 as loans “received from or guaranteed” by himself, the latest report to the Federal Election Commission showed.

The documents immediately available at the FEC did not detail whether the loans were cash directly from the Texas billionaire or bank loans that Perot guaranteed.

But the filing suggests that Perot could ask his campaign to repay him the $4.5 million, after having given it $56.2 million of his own money as outright contributions with no expectation of being repaid. A spokesman for Perot could not be reached for comment.

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Although he was the only major candidate with no spending limit in the fall presidential race because he was paying his own way, Perot did not outspend President Bush and President-elect Bill Clinton by much.

In all, Perot reported spending more than $64 million on his independent bid through Nov. 23, all but $3.9 million of it his own money--a record for self-paid campaigns.

Most of Perot’s expenditures came in the form of television advertising after he returned to the race on Oct. 1. He had dropped out of the race three months earlier.

Bush and Clinton were limited to spending no more than the $55.2 million each accepted in public campaign financing from the government for the fall campaign.

Clinton reported Friday that his campaign finished Nov. 23 with about $1.5 million in leftover cash and just $260,000 in outstanding bills. The latest Bush campaign report was not available.


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