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McCain pushes finance reform

Citizen Wire Services

Citizen wire services

BEDFORD, N.H. – As GOP front-runner George W. Bush announced his record-breaking fund-raising totals, Arizona Sen. John McCain yesterday used a high-profile speech in New Hampshire to take after both major parties on his signature issue – cleaning up campaign financing.

”I will call for the reform of our political system everywhere I go in this campaign,” declared McCain, whose $6.1 million in campaign funds is dwarfed by Bush’s $36.3 million. ”Anyone who is satisfied with the status quo should vote for someone else. But anyone who believes that America is greater than the sum of its special interests should stand with me.”

McCain’s pledge to spend his presidential campaign talking about overhauling the campaign finance laws gives him an opening to attack Bush on the issue, said Herbert Alexander, professor emeritus of political science at the University of Southern California.

”It helps explain why McCain says he’s going to use campaign finance as his main theme,” Alexander said. ”He will probably criticize Bush. He will say Bush could do with much less and doesn’t have to obligate himself to all these people.”



Republicans (in millions)

George W. Bush $36.3

John McCain 6.1 (a)

Elizabeth Dole $3.4

Gary Bauer $3.4

Dan Quayle $3.3

John Kasich $3.1 (a)

Steve Forbes $2.5

Lamar Alexander $2.2

Bob Smith $1.0

Pat Buchanan $1.0

Alan Keyes N.A.

Democrats (in millions)

Al Gore $18.2-$18.5

Bill Bradley $11.5

(a) Includes transfer from House

or Senate campaign fund

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