Massachusetts Viewpoint; Financing Political Campaigns
Welcome again to Massachusetts viewpoint. This evening we have a problem before us to discuss that is on everybody's minds will take an interest in. Political campaigning in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. And this is a question of how political campaigns are financed how have they been financed. Were they financed during the campaign of 1964 in Massachusetts and what should be done in the future by means of legislation or other practices which will help make the financing of political campaigns more fairly fair more open and aboveboard and more understandable to the public at large. Here to help us discuss this question and probe some possible answers to the financing of political campaigns are the following members of our panel Mr. Bernard and Bohrman Esquire attorney with the firm of Nathan Sinan Radomski and former president of the Greater Boston Junior Chamber of Commerce. Judge Sherwood Tarullo recently appointed judge of the Dukes County Probate
Court. President already a station in Medford and president of the community cooperative bank in Medford judge Carlo was one of the principal fundraisers for governor Peabody in his campaigns in 1962 in 1964. We also are privileged to have with us this evening Mr. R. Wayne Homans associate manager of Francis I depart and Company in Boston and tracer for Edward Brooks campaign for secretary of state in the Commonwealth in 1060. And again for the Attorney-General's campaign for re-election to the office of attorney general in 1964. Well gentlemen we are going to discuss this problem and then we are going to hear from the representative of the press this evening Mr. James Jony of the Boston traveler. And I should like to call upon you Bernard first. As a former president of the Boston Junior Chamber of Commerce an organization that has a deep interest in civic affairs and one which has studied in some detail the problem of financing political
campaigns. But Mr. Boreman are some of the issues of this very intriguing matter that we are discussing this evening. It's difficult to discuss a specific problem without outlining some generalities concerning it. And from the public's standpoint it would seem that there are three basic requirements for a system of effective campaign financing. I see the first as being certain that there is sufficient money available to candidates so that they can sustain the great debate. Enough money to guarantee the candidates a chance to discuss the issue in public forums. Secondly however this money must be obtained in a manner that does not too heavily weight government toward special interests. And thirdly the system must command the confidence of the people whose governmental officials are being elected through it. Now as I look at the Massachusetts situation as exemplified by 1960 to 1964 perhaps
1960. I see these I reach these conclusions personally. And as to sufficient money available to discuss the issues. Despite what fundraisers may think I personally feel there is enough money available to discuss the issues that may not be enough money available to provide sufficient billboards or campaign literature but I think there is enough money available to discuss the issues. Secondly that the money is obtained in ways which do not wait government towards special interests. I have no answer on that. I'd like to know the answers myself. The public and the and many many people. Appear to be friendly with government do suspect that on occasion campaign contributions may influence to defeat a passage of certain legislation or campaign got to be since may have some effect upon dispensation of little jobs or government business. I don't know but I do know I can say with certainty this is a prevalent feeling. Whether or not it's true remains to be seen. And thirdly in Massachusetts I'm absolutely certain that our system of regulating
campaign finance does not have public confidence. We do not feel that the system is adequate at present time. Well thank you very much Mr. Berman for these three points. Go to the very heart of raising money for political campaigns. Now I should like to turn to two fundraisers one for the Democratic Party and the other for the Republican Party in terms of candidates from both of these parties to give their views and possibly reactions to the points raised by Mr. Boreman. Judge HARLOW You have been a fund raiser for Peabody in his gubernatorial campaigns of 1962 in 1964. How do you as an active person who has participated in fund raising see the problem of financing political campaigns. Judge HARLOW Well thank you Mr. Gibson. Of course the problem of the public versus the practical aspects of raising funds for a candidate
sometimes would appear to be the most conflicting. I myself was chairman of the so-called re-elect governor Peabody committee in 1964 as chairman and also was my duty to be treasurer and raise the funds. Which was so important in this long drawn out campaign which started to really. The early part of this year immediately after the April 20 night election and prior to the convention of June and of course going right straight through the primary in September. Huge amounts of money were found to be needed principally because of the skyrocketing costs of our going to zation printing newspaper purchases TV and radio time. Make this most mandatory.
Years ago perhaps half a million dollars would be more than sufficient to run a statewide campaign. Anything less than a legitimate million and a quarter to a million and I have dollars today. Is not the true situation as far as running a truly. Informative and well rounded statewide campaign. The state of New York I understand requires a statewide candidate even though it's larger even though perhaps it has three times as many people. Over five million dollars to run such a campaign. Now I don't know what the complete answer is here but I would say that we've got to consider some method of shortening campaigns. Some ideas of having if we're going to stick with the convention system and abiding
by the convention candidates all of the candidates that are finally selected by the convention perhaps perhaps a limited amount of television and radio time that should be actually allocated to the particular candidates. These are the various areas perhaps that the public could help us explore in the practical needs that are so important in running the financial aspects of a candidate's campaign. But the way things are going presently I would envision that even perhaps the million a quarter million and a half will not be sufficient. When we start considering the value of a four year term in 1066. Which will be the first
time that a candidate will feel a lot more secure and he won't feel as though he has to start running from the first day he actually ascends to the office in this case of Governor and therefore if we have that type of stake involved it would seem to me that perhaps we might be forcing those funds closer to the 2 million dollar mark. And therefore I would say that without some controls and the super special interest problem has been brought up this special interest problem crops can be divided in two ways. I will cite certain groups that have been talked about many times the architects the engineers who are selected and are considered part of political patronage and we helped in our particular case even though we thought it was political patronage that we ourselves elected them on the basis of what they have done and were able to do for the Commonwealth.
But still this is an area which is one of our most important bases for political patronage as opposed to perhaps those people who will give us funds and these are not sizable funds I'm sorry to say. These people that want good government to Massachusetts. But in either case the disclosure of by so many people or. Creates in them the feeling that they don't really want to be directly associated with fun giving to any particular candidate they may work for him. But if they are going to be directly associated then you find the problem of the actual funds and how much they might give then limited because they don't want to have that stigma if I may say I attach to them. I could go on and on but I thought perhaps just a moderate I would just
mention those few things for now. Well thank you very much Judge Starr and especially your comments about what might be done to remedy some of the problems arising from the financing of political campaigns. Will Mr. R. Wayne Homans who is the associate manager of the Boston office of Francis I depart company has been working on the matter of financing political campaigns especially those for Edward Brock in his campaign of 1060 and also for his campaign in 1064 for re-election to the office of attorney general. Mr. Homans How does the matter of financing political campaigns look from your side of the street. Thank you very much Mr. Gibson. And the points raised by Mr. Bormann and Judge Harlow are in my opinion very well taken. I find myself in the fourth position or have found myself in the fortunate position of working on campaigns that have required relatively little amounts of funds. And I say this is
fortunate because I dont like any more than anybody else to have the responsibility of going out and raising the war chests which some of the major candidates in our Commonwealth have been forced to write. Let me be more explicit. In 1960 as a newcomer I worked and I worked for a candidate who was also a newcomer which polled approximately a million votes on the expansion of twenty five thousand dollars. This was a this was a state wide campaign. This year we spent in our campaign considerably less I think than the other major candidates. So I don't have quite the same view. Perhaps George talo has with respect to the need of campaign funds. We need them. We squat for them. We work hard to raise them. But I don't have the same experience that George Howell has and therefore I'm happy to be on a program with him and hear his views.
Now I think that we have a hodgepodge of laws at the present time which it would take a Philadelphia attorney some length of time to sort out and I'm certain that unscrupulous candidate can find ways to evade these laws to turn his back on these laws. And as a result the laws for the unscrupulous candidates are not are not effective. In the last analysis it's the candidate's activity in office. It's his performance in office which makes the difference. It seems to me that when we review this problem of cause relating to the receipt and expenditures of campaign funds that we should keep several things in mind. One we need a set of laws which will provide a check on the candidate accepting contributions of such size
and from such persons though place the candidate if elected under pressure which will be debt detrimental to the effective and ministration of the office which he holds. Now this applies to the matter of special interest which Mr. Bowman raised. Secondly it seems to me that the public should be provided with the amount of money which a candidate expands in order to get himself elected to a political office and office that pays $15000 a year might cost. Half a million and three quarter million maybe a million dollars to to obtain. Well the public must understand why it costs this amount of money. The public must understand that it is not just the $15000 which the candidate is is receiving as salary which puts him in a you know put him of a mind to run for office. But the
public should know how much money it seems to me is spent by a candidate for the election to his office and this connection I believe. Reports from the sector estates office that review of the records and secretary of state's office by interested parties the press or other organisations certainly should be made with extreme care and we were told over the radio I was driving to work one morning I was told that I had spent twenty twenty five thousand dollars and had books campaign issue year to elect Ed attorney general. Well this was this was far in excess of how much was actually spent. Thirdly it seems to me that the public should be provided with information on the disbursement of funds on just where the where the funds go. And this relates to the second point namely what does it cost to buy TV radio. What does it cost to get the candidate around the state on a very very close schedules and schedules
which all candidates have to operate under. By the same token such a law as it seems to me should not discourage legitimate contributions to political campaigns. We will not get good public servants in the calm of the mass transit if we do not have people contributing to the campaign and who have a real interest and getting good public servants. And if we write our laws that are in such a restrictive than that it discourages political contributions. Why then you're going to get people running for public office who won't take money out of the table. And if this is the only way to get it. Number two. Such a law should not establish an administrative jungle which will make the laws themselves ineffective by this I mean during the course of a campaign. It requires a great deal of ministration within an organisation to conform with the laws as presently written. When the reports and all get up the secretary of state has ministration there. And if we
if we provide if we require too many reports and if the administration of these laws turns out to be so complicated. That again a Philadelphia lawyer can't get through to him. Why then the laws are ineffective. And thirdly and this is a point which I think relates perhaps to the first. Namely the discouragement of legitimate contributions. It seems to me that the privacy of the individual who is contributing to campaigns should be should be protected. I'm not sure myself. And if there's a bombshell to be dropped maybe this is the time to drop it and maybe this is it. I'm not sure myself that it is not a an invasion of privacy to print the name of an individual in the newspaper who has contributed to a political campaign. That Mr. Gibson I think some are just what I am well on my mind at present time. I hope it was constructive. Well Mr. Holmes it certainly was you have added a number of issues here and recommendations
and I would dare say a bombshell as well and whether it's going to explode. We'll just have to wait and see. But in order to test it out let me turn the program over to Mr. James Dromi of the Boston traveler one of our seasoned observers of the medical scene and a person who I'm sure has a number of questions to address to the panel this evening on financing political campaigns Jim drowning. I do indeed. Mr. Gibson. I have to write off the. Right of the stock for Mr. Holmes. And one for Judge Tal this is equal time as an obstacle to the Republicans and Democrats say well. Mr. Homans on the issue of disclosure in the press and other media but principally the press I'm assuming that you would not be against having the names of such contributors on file with the secretary of state with the proviso that they would be no public disclosure in the press is that what you're thinking it will 100 percent correct.
Good. Now Mr. Howell I think you might about pot me judged talent if you would spell out for you drop the professions of architect and engineer into your discussion and I think most people have the idea that the biggest contributors to all campaigns particularly at the gubernatorial level are contractors. Could you spell out the architect engineer area for the people who are listening. I think I know what you mean but I think you might clarify that a little. Well Jim it's meant as a matter of fact the contractor in today's a campaign contribution problem has little place because other than his concern for perhaps good government. And then secondly maybe after he has won the bid for a particular job if he has a friendly individual in office there is the possibility I
suppose of this what we've heard this term used of extras and maybe the contract in that particular case feeling you as a friend in office. And if there's a question about an extra in a particular job that friend might be able to return. So we say a favor and that is the only place where I can see with a contract other than thinking a good government could perhaps feel as though he may get a quid pro quo. But other than that the contract doesn't really play the large an important part in campaign contributions. As far as the architects and engineers are concerned. We have as you know an annual so called capital outlay budget in addition of that certain agencies like the public works department are in a position to choose engineers and architects for particular construction. This
is not done on a competitive basis and cannot be done on a competitive basis principally because the profession would not tolerate it. Therefore a commissioner of administration of finance when he spends the 16 million dollars that was given by the 19 64 legislature in selecting of Architects and Engineers is able to consider those that were friendly to a campaign as a political contributor and our particular case. We also as I indicated before considered at length what the man or the individual had done previously what his reputation was in the community and so also in the Public Works Department. When the five commissioners met and decided on a particular day to whom were they going to award an engineering contract. Once again I'm sure they would consider those that were friendly as
contributors to a particular campaign. I think this is the best way to answer the question. Very good but it was drawing. I have another one for Mr. Homans. You mentioned of the how much it costs for TV and radio and press. I'm interested in some kind of an estimate of how much it costs to buy a convention and I don't mean that in a derogatory sense but it seems to me that after the April 29 3 primary elections pre-presidential is at what they call them at which the delegates are right and the town and city committees are chosen and the delegates are selected from among these. Then comes the problem with the convention time of getting them to the convention site and the costs of their food and their housing. What percentile does a major candidate expand in this area which is before he really gets into the campaign at all it's before he really gets nominated either one of you but you brought it up missed a home and so I thought I
directed at you. Oh golly I don't think I'm in no position to judge. Actually that I have not actually been a treasurer of a campaign when there has been a top 3 primary fight. I went to supporting one in the future. Well that unfold as it unfolds. However I would point out that the Junior Chamber of Commerce has suggested certain changes to the present legislation and one of the points they make is that there is an extensive amount of money spent between the time a candidate announces for public office and the time when the public offices either obtained or lost out. This whole problem of one when as the candidates campaign start. Is is a very important one. We've we've seen times when candidates have been running been running hard. They just haven't announced. Well how are you going to. How are you going to decide just exactly want to campaign start.
And secondly to what extent should a candidate be be required to to report expenditures year in year out whether he is actually in the middle of a specific campaign or not. These are these seems to me are two questions which should be raised in our political system in Massachusetts. We've got a good goodly number of qualified candidates for public office all of whom in one way or another are running continually. And this whole question of exposure of funds between elections is an area which I think should receive the attention i hope of the blue ribbon panel which I hope will be set up as a result of Bill's found Attorney General's office this year. Maybe Mr. Boreman could enlighten us a little bit on this the money spent before the actual campaign gets under way. You know our apart in our present disclosure system they Depository how it's established July 30 furth would you explain that please Mr.
Bowman just one of the positronic out in the let me say that the policy of Massachusetts has long been one of full disclosure. There's nothing new about it. It goes back to the early 20th century. However prior to nine hundred sixty two we were satisfied that we weren't getting full disclosure. And at that point the old approach of setting limits on total expenditures which was $20000 forgotten. For example was was eliminated and instead of a rigid expenditure ceiling that was impossible to comply with. We instituted a depository system which was not a new policy but rather a means of enforcing the existing policy by using bank accounts. As a means of accounting for candidates contributions and expenditures. And the idea has a great deal of merit in theory and has been proved in practice. If you are able to channel all of the candidates kind of visions into the bank account and require that no expenditures be made except through the bank account and you are able to establish a system of double entry bookkeeping that assures you that both the expenditures and contributions are being reported
accurately. Now in the case of Massachusetts it was decided that this system would not commence until July 30 first. We have already discussed that. The saving the fact that the campaign starts considerably before July thirty first and one particular type of expenditure which I won't put a price tag on but does seem to be Expect an expensive item as a convention and our convention battles. There certainly was a significant battle for senator in one thousand sixty two at the Democratic convention was certainly a significant battle for attorney general. In 1962 at the Republican Convention these conventions are not subject to the system to the extent that the system doesn't go into effect until after the convention has been completed. So that would be just one point. I think we assume too much however when we accept a certain figure as being required to get elected. Now why should cost a million and a half dollars to become elected in Massachusetts. I don't question that it is a realistic figure today. What I
question is should we condescend or acquiesce in this as an accepted figure should we recognize that perhaps there are a lot of expenditures that don't have to be made they don't do anything for the public they don't enhance the operation of government. It costs a lot of money for a key billboard but does this do anything for government. It costs a lot of money to post signs on utilities polls and public property. What does this enhanced the operation of government. It costs a lot of money to put a little biographical sketch on television for five minutes. Or have a parent perhaps. Parents of children rather than the candidate himself. But this enhanced the operation of government. Now before we say that we have to raise a million and a half dollars perhaps we have to look not only at where money comes from but how it's being spent. Now this is a key point. We have a number of suggestions extant from the president's committee on this subject and ideas such as free time subsidized
publications tax incentives all of which merit discussion perhaps this evening. But the key question will remain what about the rest of them what does it do any good to give a candidate $100000 from public funds if another candidate can still raise a million. You see so we have to assure ourselves that we are establishing an equitable system before we commence to subsidize it with public funds. While I was in free enterprise system in regard to politics. In other words the fellow that can raise a million should not be allowed to raise a million because his opposition can only raise one hundred thousand. Is that the free enterprise system is the non free enterprise system I would write and say if you are going to establish a criterion for selecting public officials on the basis of the best fund raising abilities then that the answer is No but I feel that they will be some legitimate discussion of just how campaign funds should be spent. And I might say this is not personal in Massachusetts we already have a specified list of permissible expenditures.
This is John Gibson at the Lincoln filing center at Tufts University and on Massachusetts viewpoint we are discussing financing political campaigns and have already engaged in a number of talks and raised a number of points concerning what has been done and what might be done with respect to raising the money and spending the money so necessary for candidates for public office in the democracy. With us this evening are Bernard BORMANN The former president of the Greater Boston Junior Chamber of Commerce an attorney with the firm of Nathan Rudolph. Also Judge Sherwood Tarullo Dukes County Probate Court. President Al radio station in Medford and also president of the Medford coopted bank in a fundraiser for Governor Peabody. Also Mr. R. Wayne home and so should manager of Francis I DuPont company in Boston and a traitor with the book campaign for secretary of state in 1016 again for the book campaign for re-election to the office of attorney general. In 1964.
Well gentlemen we are talking about things we can raise money for and Mr. Boreman seems to be making the statement that there might be some limitations on campaign expenditures to be a little more specific he says or rather questions as to whether all the expenditures indeed are necessary for political campaigning is it necessary for a biography on television or this billboard or that. And I wonder judge Harlow and Mr. Homans whether you think it might be possible to have a list that would specify very clearly what can. Money be spent for what it should not be spent for. Or should the money be raised and let the candidates spend it in such a manner as they think best will promote the interests of the candidate. Well if I may say as far as a list of permissible expenditures. First of all going back to the question that Mr Joni.
Proposed as far as I know under the present law no delegate once elected can be subsidized in any way in his travels in his room and board or in any other which way. That's dangerous I was going to mention going to de-facto is not judged. No it is not a fact that many of them do have the taps picked up for their rooms and so forth. I tell you most frankly I myself was concerned about this and we had many meetings with our committee and we determined no matter what the final result might be that both in fact endure we would not participate. In helping any delegate get to the convention or in his room and board there and now we took this policy because of the fact we felt that somewhere along the line you had to abide by some of these rules and not at a future date be chosen as the one where the test would be
made. This is the way I think that the only way that some of these laws can be actually enforced if you get some of your leaders to realize that they may be the ones where the test might be made. And this is the way we ran and we didn't take the convention over Bill Oddie. I would turn the governor by close to a thousand vote plurality and any other basis except by hard work and especially hard work and put upon the Governor. So I think this idea of permissible or. A permissible problem of expenditures and where the money should go has been pretty well set forth in the law you know as well as I also and this is where the problem probably could come up the question of spending money for a liquor let's say we have a testimonial dinner and of course Mr. Homans has been participating and we have been participating in testimonial dinners for our candidates to raise
funds. Well I know that many times that there is a buyer for the head table. While the head table is convening up stairs before they march down to the bar room let's say when you get the bill from the hotel do you separate that you say well this is not permissible. We had as reason come for us. If you serve a bottle of wine at the dinner table at the banquet that night you take off the fact that that bottle of wine cost $1 for each table. I was weird as reason. Come forth and this is the problem of the permissive the permissive vs. the actual. It seemed to me which is got to be some reason apply to all these laws of the just all of a sudden conjured up. I think we might check with Judge Harlow after the program was to drop me off where he can get a bottle of wine for a dollar. I'd like to I'd The point I'd like to take him back for a minute. I want to get the others to Holman's in on this too but go ahead. He said that Judge Thomas said that
they did not feel it proper to help any candidate any delegate get to the convention. This was they felt that they had to abide by some of the rules is the way he put it. Now I ask what rules. You did not abide by it. Well as far as I know we feel that we have made a complete disclosure and followed the laws as far as humanly possible. We did not for example go out and borrow money when we were really tight. Other than using the limits of the 3000 and the 6000 for a husband and wife I excuse me just a moment Judge Carlow. You set a limit of 3000 maybe 6000 per couple now would you explain the meaning of those figures. Under our laws in this Commonwealth it's been determined and actually set forth that $3000 would be the maximum allowed in any one calendar
year as a contribution by any one person or in the case of a husband and wife. A total of $6000 to any one candidate to any one candidate for any one office now. Many candidates felt that they could go borrow sums beyond those figures and I think it's been determined and I think the papers in the various media have also determined that the possibility of a loan being caught and therefore it becoming a gift and therefore going beyond the 3000 and the $6000 a law is very much there and therefore. This again was a violation. And as far as we know we have as much as possible without within our knowledge followed the laws to the T. I don't know of any particular place Mr. Johnny where we have not done so. I might have talked generally but this is as far
as I know. Well Mr. Homans What about the list of permissible expenditures should it be increased or decreased or. And you have any particular views on how and for what reason money should be spent in a campaign. I believe one when you write laws you have to look forward to the administration of said laws. And I believe that if you write a law which details the permissible expenses versus the non permissible expenses the unpermitted expenses that you again get into a high part of a ministry of detail which which will turn out to be entirely unworkable. And also I cannot visualize the secretary of state getting sufficient funds for his staff to to check over in detail. Just exactly how the money was bad to whom it was spent and what it was spent for. Again I say if if a candidate wants to evade laws if we have an
unscrupulous candidate who wants to it wants to evade such things there there it's going to take quite quite an army of people to put a stop to it. Now as far as as far as your original question regarding whether it should be left up to the candidate I believe yes it should because only by by permitting a candidate to run his own campaign to develop. His own campaign program seems to me can he project himself in a fashion that he wants to project himself. And we have a we had a we set up a budget back in August one where we outlined a budget and some detail for the entire campaign. We didn't come far off it as the campaign unfolds unfolded. Wait wait wait exceeded certain items and we would drop where you were below on other items. But in essence we detail our campaign budget. And again I referred to the laws as
presently written. I believe there's one section in the law which says you shall not incur expenses beyond those beyond that amount which is presently on deposit in the but in the depository now. If this in fact were were put into effect and were enforced I don't see how a campaign could be worked. You know you're committing yourself to certain campaign to certain campaign expenses rather early in the campaign. Now is this incurring of expense or isn't incurring the expense you get if for instance if you want to do four hundred eighty three billboards in the state in. October November or September October you would have to make that commitment in June possibly to get them. And is that is that correct. Correct. Exactly and this is this is section section 17 paragraph of chapter 55. And in fact it further goes just goes on to say go I just want to get this Chapter 55 of Chapter 55 of what Mr. Holland the general loss of time and
this is the chapter The refers to political expenditures and I don't think mentioning correct I say excuse me. Correct. And it further goes on to state that that if in fact. Money is not on deposit why you must file with a sector state. The actual unpaid obligations. Now what does this mean. Every week you have to run your accounts payable and set up the sector estate. I just don't know. This is a question I'd like to ask. Now I mean I throw in a question for any one of you gentlemen or all of you is it. Where do you feel the duty lies with the secretary of state in this area or with the attorney general's office regarding implementation of this chap of 55. Whatever reforms are needed do you think it lies. Well this is a question of controversy among those office holders. I feel the statute gives both of them sufficient authority to take initial action. However it's been construed by each of them to perhaps place the
burden on the other. He just went to hell in a lot of political buck passing. It is but not in its war said proper words. Program I've got a qualified event because I see one for the problem. Should either of them take the initial steps they would run into a secondary problem. And that's the hodgepodge of laws and other what should we commence a prosecution of this law they prospective defendant could raise a myriad of defenses based on nothing more than ambiguities in the statute. Mr. Holmes says it's impossible to figure out the law. I must say that he's correct that the more you read it the less you know about it. The great danger in administering the laws come from people who read it once and feel they understand it. The law is subject to a number of conflicting interpretations and it illustrates a problem which is perhaps prevalent throughout our state local government perhaps National do we have a situation here which requires a number of changes. Chapter 55 can no longer be corrected through sufficiently corrected through. Occasional amendments
Chapter 55 should be replaced by an understandable comprehensible code for the operation of an election in which a candidate for a particular office could trace just what steps apply to him. Just for example we have perhaps four or five different types of campaigns intellect and fundraising processes being covered in Chapter 55 and anyone who reads it has to because only worried as to whether or not a particular provision applies to his campaign. Well it doesn't I'd like to relate to something we've discussed previously I didn't suggest that we should have a list of permissive expenditures that is a case in Massachusetts but perhaps this is a bad approach. However it might be possible to establish some ground rules for prohibited expenditures certain things which candidates themselves might agree upon as being. Something they could do without if the other fellow would do without. In which case we might be able to lessen their own particular campaign burdens. And this points to a question I'm confused about. It's the candidates who ultimately bear the burden of this
problem. They bear the burden of fund raising through their associates. They bear the burden of fair treatment for contributors and non contributors after the election. They bear the burden of bookkeeping and concern about what's right and what's wrong whether it's going to be disclosed or turned down. And they bear all these burdens and then upon election we find very little concern on the part of either office holders or the public about doing something concerning this problem. The public concern during the campaign. Where's all this money coming from. By December 1st I suppose we're all worried about Christmas because that concern ends. The public and the office holders must make a concerted effort to do something about the problem. It doesn't come from any sort of spontaneous combustion. We really need an overhaul of these laws and we really need concerted effort and concern on the part of the public and the office holders before we can commence to achieve this. Other than that we had for more and more expensive campaigns more and more distrust on the part of the public as to
how the monies raised and spent whether or not justified the distrust continues. And as long as there is public distrust we have an inherent weakness in a democratic system. While groaning I would like to us and I will ask. Judge talo and I will accept the predication of the Peabody organization operated properly but is it his feeling and I'd like to Mr. Homans to answer this too because he's aligned with a man holding high state office but is it. Is it your feeling Judge talo that because of the hodgepodge the ambiguities in the law that there is widespread are the availability of widespread under the counter operation and by a candidate that is less than top caliber. Can he swerve on following up the law. Is that what your view on that. Well if the answer that I think basically it depends upon how you want to rationalize away your feelings of how you want to operate as a
candidate or for a candidate. And. The only way I could answer that I think is to say that. Surely because of the ambiguity that these laws are presently present there is the possibility of a swerve as you indicate. However once again it depends upon the candidate and the intent of the organization to abide as best as they are able to the laws as they best understand them. I think this is the only way I could answer that question I would say in relation to Mr Boardman's feeling that perhaps budgets and campaigns relate to enhancing the operation of government. What determines enhancing operation of government. The fact that you didn't have that billboard on the Southeast Expressway and therefore the other
candidate whom the public really didn't want was elected. Does this enhance the operation good operation of government. It's very difficult it would seem to me Mr. Boardman to determine what monies what expenditures what media we going to sit and judge and decide that i can they might or might not use. And this is going to enhance the operation of government. This is terribly difficult for me to see what you're driving at will use ledgers for example that perhaps campaigns start too early and this points toward the British system which since 1884 has perhaps been markedly better than our own. I want to narrow the limitations is the length of the campaign. However they are very specifically. Our concern was how money is spent. And through this process I think although I've never been in England during a campaign and only been there a few times when there wasn't a campaign I have the feeling through discussion with Englishmen of Britishers and through reading that their campaigns do force a discussion of the issues even though it is concerned with a shorter period of
time. And finally they employ a very effective enforcement device. You know how to guarantee the proper reporting. In England no one may make an expenditure for campaign purposes unless it is specifically authorized in writing by the agent of the candidate of whom there is one. It works now. The difference in size of consistencies in Massachusetts would dictate a modification of the English system. But we could try. Now the depository system likewise is based upon centralized control. Now it doesn't as I agree I agree it doesn't do much good to talk about one solution. I would agree that I wouldn't suggest that we ought to lay ground rules for what's a proper expenditure until we got to the more essential problem. Effective regulation guarantee of disclosure at that point. We could take a new look at what might be proper. I for one would favor tax incentives. I would would favor government subsidies providing free radio and television time. If I was satisfied that we had an effective disclosure law
and when we were able to guarantee candidates equal time. To use as they saw fit without the burdens of fundraising. I could then say I don't see the purpose in a billboard. I don't make the suggestion as of 1964. I say it's an ultimate objective. Well thank you Mr. Berman I have heard several people mention the C evening about the. Wishes of the candidate and the candidate's decision to control expenditure and so forth one question I'd like to have answered if it is possible is this. You do have gentlemen who are in charge of campaigns who are out raising money and who are organizing the fundraising for the campaign and so forth. What relation does the candidate really have to the organization of the campaign is he aware of where the money actually comes from or the conditions on which it has been raised and so forth and I know this is going to vary probably from candidate to candidate but we have two men here who have raised money
for others holding high public office and certainly with respect to Governor Peabody and Attorney General Brooks where they where have first judge Carlow and then Mr. Homans of the exact nature of the fund raising tour throughout the course of the campaign or where a lot of things done in their behalf which about which they did not know. Or is it possible for a candidate to be informed all times about these matters. Well I think Mr. Gibson that the candidate in the heat of a campaign finds it most difficult to know where all funds are coming from at any particular time. Or as a matter of fact where the monies are actually being expended I would say in the case of Governor Peabody that we had various meetings in our particular case it was the Statler Hilton Hotel where people would actually come in and actually present to the governor their contribution. Other times of course we would have a so-called boiler room. And I think many candidates have a boiler room if I may tell the audience this is
a room our rooms which are usually set up in a hostelry usually in the city of Boston. Do you think if they crossed a lot of programs they would end a bank of telephones. I seen in this boiler room number of people use these telephones to use various lists of names and these names are usually passed on from candidate to candidate from election to election and now of course making it easier for candidates to get each others because of the full disclosure. And these people call individuals and actually either get contributions over the phone and follow up by picking up checks or having them mailed to the hotel or they arrange for appointments for the candidate and that particular individual then come in and give the contribution to the candidate. In other cases as in the case of Governor Peavey's campaign as well many some contect campaign
contributions are given other then to the candidate in which case is usually then sent to the Depository as close as possible to the daily bases. And then we go from there and so in the case of expenses as well it would be inconceivable to have a campaign candidate available every time a campaign manager decides that hes got to make an expenditure for printing for television for radio what have you keeping in mind one thing that in most cases we are under the gun to have the money they have before we make the purchase. And this is a serious problem and this is a problem that Mr. Homans has brought out in a different way as related to the law which says about this incurring of expenses. I would say also if I may just to get back to a further point brought out earlier in the program by Mr. Homans the fact that he was with a candidate of lesser office that of attorney general I think is a factor in how much money has to be raised for a particular
campaign. Also the question of who your competition is at the particular time this year Senator Kennedy had little or no competition. And this of course is not any question thrown at the Howard Whitmore as opposed to his problem of two years ago when he was fighting a comic for the Democratic nomination. So I think these factors also must be considered as to what monies are necessary and also one more point if I may Mr. Baughman I have pointed out and I feel that the first control must be a control of the length of campaigns. If we can establish this as the first step. The next step is going to follow necessarily because there is not enough television and not enough radio available. Which is your biggest expenditure today I believe especially television to be able to give the candidates the amount of time that they would like to get perhaps to ensure their victory. So if you shot in the campaign by number one deciding when you have that
April twenty ninth election perhaps its better to have it in June or July. When do you have the convention. Perhaps like the Democratic National people did the latter part of August. This may be a way of tightening up this money expenditure and that way we can get some for the control. Well go ahead I want to have a Mr homophobe and let Mr. Thomas ask this question about the relationship between the attorney general books and those who are running the campaign to raise the money in his behalf at all means a candidate first of all has to have people on his staff in whom he has complete confidence. And this is the way it ran in our campaign. We did set up certain administer procedures and I'll say one thing about it was it encourages each candidate to set up a business like organization in the running of this campaign. It requires the maintenance of certain records which to me is just plain good basis good good business. I've referred to the establishment of a budget. Well Mr. Brooke was in on the establishment of that original budget. He we we fought it out backwards and forwards we tried to figure out where we're going to
spend the money. From from then on. Mr. Brock I believe received. I'm sure he received the reports that we made to the secretary of state which only listed of course the by name the persons who contribute over 50 dollars and not those who contributed less than $50. As far as the expansion of funds are concerned. The what the campaign manager Greg Demas who have actually fund raising and myself oh who was the treasurer of the campaign. I had the responsibility of OK any expansion in excess of $25 and I was supposed to disclose the sector States post know about any expansion above $50. But two of us had to OK each bill in excess of $25. Now it seems to me that we set up within our organization the proper controls for the expansion of money not only to hold us hold ourselves within the budget but also to hold
ourselves within the law and to assure complete compliance with a lot but this was these were administered procedures which were set up in our campaign which were strictly adhered to and every invoice above $25 in our files has has to OKs on it. So two of us to responsible individuals. OK these bills and. Mr Brook obviously had no time to OK every single one of self but he put his trust in us. I'm sure that you made no mistake in doing so. Well thank you very much Mr. Holmes and before we wind up this evening I wonder whether anybody has any views at all on Mr. Holman statement that it might be an invasion of privacy to have a public disclosure of certainly in the press of the names of the contributors to political campaigns. Mr Ball when you have a disclosure thing it became a big issue in 1004. After all the Parker lost the campaign to raise the issue and perhaps he wouldn't gotten very far with it if Perry Belmont who I'm amazed to learn was a Democrat hadn't made it a
public cause and by the time element had gotten through establishing this policy through a number of states. JP Morgan said well that Mehlman has his way while the working class part of Morgan's if you point it prevails today and there are some who consider it a right of privacy as far as I'm concerned. And we have a right of privacy and how we cast our ballot. But how we conduct our elections is public business. Well thank you very much Mr. Barr and I think that probably it is probably the certainly the suggestion Mr. Homans has made deserves wide discussion in the Commonwealth in discussing financing political campaigns this evening a number of the panelists pointed up the shortcomings of some of the present rules and regulations and practices. Certainly there is a hodgepodge of laws affecting raising money for political campaigns and I suggest that you read chapter 65 55 which has been mentioned in ceding our laws dealing with political contributions to get a bit of the flavor of this. Some people feel
that the public image is not particularly good with respect to the raising of money for PlayBook campaigns there are a lot of problems of course in the expenditures for the campaigns that we face every two years although judge Carlow has pointed out that the four year term for the. Executive branch members at the in the Commonwealth would do very much to have confidence and restore confidence so that a man would not have to be continually running for office. It has also been suggested by Mr Boardman that probably Chapter 55 should be replaced be rewritten and the ineffective disclosure law should be presented to the Commonwealth population so that more attention could be focussed upon this crucial issue. We've also talked to Judge Carlo as mention the idea of having a shorter campaign so that all the expenditures that ordinarily go through the long campaign of many many months might not be might not be necessary. It has also been raised the matter of the
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