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1605 Rock Prairie Ad
College Station, TX
Thursday, November 20, 2003 THE BATTALIOS
Presidential hopefuls’ decline publii
financing, give rivals short-term boost
By Sharon Theimer
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
WASHINGTON — Fund-rais
ing front-runners President Bush,
Howard Dean and John Kerry are
giving the rest of the presidential
candidates a short-term boost in
the wallet by skipping taxpayer
financing next year.
Because the three are turning
away the assistance from tax
payers who check a box on their
returns, the eight candidates still
participating in the program are
expected to get substantially
more federal money at the start
of the primary season.
The Federal Election
Commission initially estimated
candidates would only get 40
cents to 50 cents of every dollar
they were entitled to when the
first checks are sent in January.
But Bush. Dean and Kerry
are saving the program millions
with their decision, meaning the
rest of the candidates could get
roughly 75 cents to 80 cents on
the dollar, based on an
Associated Press analysis of
FEC and campaign estimates.
“By opting out of the system.
Dean and Kerry and Bush
before them have actually
helped the candidates who stay
in the system by reducing the
shortfall,” said Larry Noble, a
former FEC attorney who heads
the nonpartisan Center for
Under a program set up after
Watergate to reduce the influ
ence of big money in presiden
tial elections, the government
matches up to $250 of every pri
vate donation qualified candi
dates collect for their primary
campaigns. The maximum
assistance any candidate can
receive is $18.7 million.
About one in 11 taxpayers
checks the box sending $3 in
federal money — it does not
cost taxpayers anything from
their refunds — to the presiden
tial matching fund. The program
frequently runs short on cash.
Candidates typically make up
the “matching fund” shortfalls
with loans while waiting for the
fund to be replenished. That
costs the campaign extra in
In the 2000 primaries, candi
dates received about 50 cents of
every dollar they were entitled
to in January, compared to about
60 cents on the dollar in 1996.
Dean’s departure alone had a
major impact. The former
Vermont governor, who has
done particularly well drawing
small-dollar donors, would have
been entitled to at least $15 mil
lion from the program had he
stayed in, the FEC estimates.
Wesley Clark is expected to
get one of the biggest initial
payments — roughly $5.5 mil
lion if matchable donations
continue coming in at the pace
they have been. The Clark
campaign estimates he will
have raised about $15.5 mil
lion by year’s end, roughly 44
percent of it matchable.
According to rough estimates
from other campaigns, Dick
Gephardt will get about $5 mil
lion from the fund in January;
Joe Lieberman, around $4 mil
lion; Dennis Kucinich roughly
$3.3 million; and Lyndon
LaRouche, up to $850,000.
A1 Sharpton and Carol
Moseley Braun are expected to
When candidates decline, otheisbert
When John Kerry and Howard Dean chose not to take public
campaign funds, it benefited the rest of the candidates The Fete
Election Commission initially estimated each candidate wouldge:
40 cents to 50 cents for every dollar earned. Now they will gel
about 75 cents to 80 cents on every dollar.
The system is financed
by taxpayers wtwcW
this box on their tax
returns. It directs S3 ol
their paid taxes to the
fund. Only one in 11 lien
Dennis Kucinich $3.3 million
John Edwards Up to $4 million
Lyndon LaRouche $850,000
Carol Moseley Braun $100,000
Al Sharpton $100,000
SOURCES: Federal Election Commission: Internal Revenue Service
get a few hundred thousand dol
lars from the fund initially if they
take part, the FEC estimates.
John Edwards’ campaign
declined to provide an estimate.
The FEC projects that based on
his fund raising through
September, the period covered by
the latest campaign finance
reports, the North Carolina sena
tor will be eligible for at least $3.2
million. If Edwards accumulates
matchable donations at the same
pace this quarter as he has previ
ously, he would get a first pay
ment in the $4 million range.
Together, it appears the can
didates will initially be eligible
for roughly $23 million in
matching funds. The FEC esti
mates the fund will have about
$18.2 million to give out in
January; a February shortfall
also expected, as the prtp
waits for tax returns to replec
Noble said that while big
initial payouts are a pits
Democrats taking the pull;
money would probably pttfs
taking out larger loans tote
primary rivals operating ota I
That’s because Dean, to
and Bush aren’t bound by It
system's state-by-state spend;
caps or its overall $45 rail:
Campaign watchdog gras;
have urged them to abide by tlf
program’s limits anyway;on|
Kerry plans to do so, and oil;
by the overall limit.
Teacher suspended for
experiment that caused
five students to vomit
By Aaron Beard
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
SMITHFIELD, N.C. —A high school teacher was suspended for
a classroom experiment that caused several students to vomit after
drinking large amounts of milk.
Jeff Ferguson, a chemistry and physics teacher at Smithfield-
Selma High School, organized the experiment last week to test the
body’s ability to neutralize acids in milk.
It was intended to show the body can handle only so much before
a natural reaction occurs and the person vomits. Out of 42 students
in two classes, at least five did just that.
On Wednesday, Ferguson failed to persuade a judge to let him
return to the classroom. He wanted a temporary restraining order so
that he could return to help his students prepare for end-of-semester
exams, but Superior Court Judge Knox Jenkins denied his request.
“It’s been rather unpleasant sitting at home and knowing nobody
is teaching my class as effectively as I can,” Ferguson said after the
hearing. “There’s not a lot positive about this situation.”
The teacher’s attorney, Lamar Armstrong, said students were not
required to participate in the experiment, and students had recepta
cles in case they became ill.
“If anybody wanted to quit at any time, they could have,”
Parents alerted school administrators about the incident last
Wednesday. Ferguson was sent home the next day and was sus
pended with pay Tuesday, pending an investigation by a law firm
hired by the school district.
NEWS IN BRIEF
Senate fight over
additive may snag
WASHINGTON (AP) —
Congress is one vote away
from sending a massive ener
gy bill to the White House, but
it could still hit a snag in the
Senate over a dispute involving
a gasoline additive that has
contaminated drinking water in
several dozen states.
The energy legislation won
solid backing from Republicans
as well as a surprising number
of Democrats on Tuesday at it
whizzed through the House by
a 246-180 margin, leaving it up
to the Senate to take up the bill
later this week.
The measure, covering some
1,100 pages, would provide $23
billion in tax incentives and other
measures to produce more coal,
oil, natural gas and nuclear
power and double the need for
corn-based ethanol, a bonanza
for the Farm Belt states.
The boost in ethanol produc
tion to 5 billion gallons a year
has broad Republican and
Democratic support and is
viewed as a key to getting the
Some Senate Democrats ail
counting votes to see if M : ;
might be able to derail thelejfl
lation by a filibuster. They«
stripped from the bill a provis:'l
that protects makers of MM
from product liability lavffl
arising from the gasolineadm
fouling drinking water.
NEW YORK (AP)-Several
dozen Wall Street traders siiij
pected of foreign currercj
exchange crimes have beej
arrested in a crackdown or (|
largely unregulated financial
market, sources said.
U.S. Attorney James B.Coiik
was expected on Wednesday!:
announce the charges agae :
the traders, who were arrests:
Citing people familiar wilti tsj
case, The Wall Street Jouri'ii
reported Wednesday that tradsT
at more than a dozen firms#1
to be charged with conspirao
wire fraud, money launderirt-
and securities fraud.
In one alleged case, employesj
at J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.aT
UBS AG were accused of arrar?
ing deals in which their firms IcT
money but customers profited, s
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