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Sybert Heavily Outspends Foes in GOP Bid to Face Beilenson

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Relying heavily on his own funds, businessman Richard Sybert is financially overwhelming his opponents in the race for the Republican nomination to oppose Rep. Anthony C. Beilenson (D-Woodland Hills) in a congressional district that includes Malibu.

Sybert, a former aide to Gov. Pete Wilson who moved to Woodland Hills last year, has loaned his campaign $430,000 of the $473,080 that he has raised for the June 7 primary, according to campaign reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. These records reflect activity through March 31, the close of the most recent reporting period.

Sybert’s closest fund-raising competitor in the 24th District is Robert K. Hammer, a Newbury Park investment banking consultant, who had garnered $70,367. His fund-raising has been meager; he loaned himself $61,160 of that total.

Said Sybert: “I have necessarily had to pay some attention to my primary opposition, but I don’t consider it substantial and I do expect to win the primary. I see my major opponent as Mr. Beilenson in the general election.”

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Sybert, who was Wilson’s director of planning and research and is now president of a small Santa Barbara toy company, said he plans to spend $200,000 to $300,000 on numerous campaign mailings and, perhaps, radio and cable television advertising.

Also in the GOP primary, commercial real estate broker Emery Shane of Woodland Hills reported raising $48,631 this year, including $37,436 that he has loaned his campaign.

Mark Boos Benhard of Woodland Hills, who owns a media relations firm, reported raising $7,081 this year. He loaned his campaign $10,000 in December and another $500 this year.

Newbury Park businessman Sang Korman, who poured more than $800,000 of his own funds into three previous unsuccessful congressional bids, did not file a report. He is not waging an active campaign.

From Malibu, the 24th District extends into the San Fernando Valley and continues north to Thousand Oaks. The district is considered competitive for a Republican candidate and the GOP nominee may benefit from national party funding in the fall race with Beilenson.

Aside from his own largess, Sybert’s fund raising has been modest. He brought in $8,000 from political action committees, including $3,000 from a PAC representing car dealers nationwide and $2,000 from the Lockheed Employees PAC in Calabasas.

For his part, Beilenson did little fund raising during the first three months of this year. He faces a nominal primary challenge from Scott Gaulke, a Sherman Oaks businessman who has run previously as a follower of political extremist Lyndon LaRouche. No report was available for Gaulke; candidates who raise or spend less than $5,000 are not required to file.

Beilenson, the third-ranking Democrat on the influential Rules Committee, spent $753,415 to win 56% of the vote two years ago--the first time he ran in the newly drawn swing district. He said he was uncertain how much he’ll need for the fall campaign.

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“It depends on who wins the Republican primary,” Beilenson said. “It depends on how much he is likely to have. I tend to be responsive.”


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