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THE RACE FOR GOVERNOR

'My Campaign Is Not Perfect'

October 11, 2002

The text of Bill Simon Jr.'s comments Thursday in Los Angeles about his incorrect assertion that Gray Davis had illegally accepted a campaign donation in his state office follow. Simon's comments at Town Hall Los Angeles were his first on the matter, although his campaign acknowledged Wednesday night that the allegations were unfounded.

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When I entered this race, I looked forward to the debate on the issues, and I looked forward to the possibility of putting forward my ideas to the people of California, and having a good and vigorous dialogue about the issues. But unfortunately, this campaign--especially during the course of the last couple months --has really been seriously sidetracked. I've been the subject of a barrage of attacks from Gray Davis. He's attacked literally all aspects of my life--my business, my charity, my family, and even, more recently, my late father.

At the debate on Monday, I started out ... by asking the governor to please apologize to the people of California for the type of campaign that he was running, in addition to the type of job that he was doing as governor. Also, at that debate, I asked the governor if he ever accepted a campaign contribution in a government office building. I want to be clear today, ladies and gentleman, because there may be a question in your minds. I asked that question because my campaign was aware--through a credible law enforcement organization who was formally in the process of filing a complaint with the Fair Political Practices Commission--that the governor had done exactly that. And I knew that this organization, by taking these exact steps, was really implicating itself, in addition, so I knew that they were taking this matter extraordinarily seriously.

They also assured my campaign that they had documentary evidence that supported this violation, evidence that they insisted was accurate, and they would be making this definitive evidence available at a later date to the public.

It now appears, yesterday, that the organization's allegation against the governor was wrong, and that their evidence does not hold up, and that our faith in their assurances was misplaced. So I want to just say quite clearly today, in the spirit of my request to the governor for an apology, I find it necessary to express to everyone my sincere regret for the way this matter was handled.

Now, many of you may have seen my latest commercial, where I say I'm not perfect, and that's indeed true. Now we know, of course, my campaign is not perfect. The only one that's perfect that I know of at this point is my wife, Cindy.

But I must say that this mistake was made because to us, the charge was a credible one.

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