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DNC Financed Separate Fund-Raising Phones For Gore

Phone lines to call potential donors were in government buildings


WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, March 3) -- To make it easier for Vice President Al Gore to raise campaign money, the Democratic Party installed special telephone lines in government buildings, a former top White House aide said Sunday.

Former aide George Stephanopoulos, who quit the White House for a teaching job at Columbia University, said "of course the vice president was raising money."

"You set up special phones, political phones, paid for by the DNC," said Stephanopoulos, who is also a regular panelist on ABC's "This Week."

ABC correspondent Sam Donaldson asked Stephanopoulos to elaborate; fund-raising on government property is unlawful.

"You put in different lines, but the legal counsel sets it up," Stephanopoulos said. "You put in special phones, special faxes, special computers that are for political work, for the fund-raiser work."


Donaldson asked, "But still inside of a government building?"

Stephanopoulos said, "Sure."

"A government residence?" Donaldson asked.

"Absolutely," Stephanopoulos said.

Over the weekend, The Washington Post reported that Gore's activities raised about $40 million for the Democratic National Committee and the 1996 re-election effort. Some contributors said they felt pressured by what they considered Gore's heavy-handed fund-raising appeals.

Gore has not yet commented, but White House counsel Lanny Davis told CNN's "Late Edition" that Gore "did nothing wrong and nothing illegal. The suggestion of any coercion is completely baseless."

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