Your editorial (Oct. 26), "Television Bashing," on the debasement of political campaigns by TV commercials is well-taken.
Since 1962 I have been directly involved in 10 major statewide political campaigns for governor, U.S. Senate, the attorney general and three initiative measures. In that period there has been a steady escalation of campaign costs and concomitantly greater and greater demands on candidates to spend more and more time on raising money to pay for the huge, mounting TV costs. It's now reached the dimensions of a TV arms race.
Candidates are spending 75% to 95% of their time in endless rounds of fund-raising cocktail parties, breakfasts, dinners and follow-up telephone calls, wheedling money from a "fat cat" special interests and wealthy individuals who are besieged by the constant mail-telephone call campaigns for money.
So, yes indeed, the candidate doesn't have time for debates, community forums, meetings with neighborhood groups and consultation with civic officials about problems that relate to a state political election.