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CAMPAIGN 2000

Bush, Gore Urged to Do Like Lazio, Clinton on Soft Money

September 27, 2000|From Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Senate's leading supporters of campaign finance legislation appealed to Al Gore and George W. Bush on Tuesday to follow the lead set in New York's Senate race and ban soft money ads in their battle for the White House.

"In the same spirit that motivated the Lazio-Clinton agreement, we respectfully encourage you to attempt to make a similar agreement in your race," wrote Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Russell D. Feingold (D-Wis.).

"Specifically, we urge you . . . to reject any efforts by political parties to use soft money to run independent radio or television advertisements in an attempt to influence your race, and to appeal to independent organizations to refrain from doing the same."

Similar letters were sent to all House and Senate candidates.

Bush spokeswoman Mindy Tucker said of the proposal: "We will take it under review."

"Al Gore challenged George Bush months ago to forgo soft money in this campaign and to drop soft money ads," spokesman Douglas Hattaway said.

Rep. Rick Lazio and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, battling for a Senate seat in New York, reached a deal over the weekend that would prohibit any political parties endorsing them from airing TV and radio ads boosting them or attacking their opponent. That applies to the Republican and Conservative parties on Lazio's side and the Democratic, Liberal and Working Families parties on Clinton's.

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