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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL

Kerry Announces He Will Not Take Public Funds for Campaign

Aired November 14, 2003 - 14:47   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

MILES O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: All right, let's go to Senator John Kerry. He's making an announcement today about whether he's going to accept matching funds for his campaign in the primary stages. Let's listen.
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SEN. JOHN KERRY (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: ... the real strategy to restore our economic strength in this country, and it will stand up and fight against the special powerful moneyed interest and for the working people of our country to make the workplace in America fair again. That's the kind of president that I will be.

Today I'm also issuing a challenge to Governor Dean. Senator Russ Feingold has asked all of the Democrats, if they do choose to go outside of the caps, which he believes is an available option. He has asked that they agree to spend no more than the $45 million total cap during the primaries until there's an effective nominee chosen.

And so I ask Governor Dean to join me. I have made that pledge already. And I ask Governor Dean to join that pledge so that he can show America that his decision is not a decision based on trying to get an advantage against his opponents in the primaries, but it is truly an effort to try to deal with the money that President Bush will have.

O'BRIEN: Senator John Kerry announcing he is following his competitor in the Democratic field Howard Dean in turning away federal matching funds in the primary stages of all of this thus removing a whole host of limitations, strings that are attached to that money.

And cognizant of the fact that the president of the United States, George Bush, was the first candidate to do that last go around and has turned down the federal funds on this go around as well. Thus the Democrats trying to put themselves in position where they're on an even playing field. We'll be watching that very closely.

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