Bush startet mit Rekordsumme in den Wahlkampf

--- Noch nie hatte ein Präsident oder ein Präsidentschaftskandidat so viel Kohle für die Wahlkampfwerbung in den Taschen wie Bush, berichtet die Washington Post: Since 1998, Bush has raised a record $296.3 million in campaign funds, giving him an overwhelming advantage in running against Vice President Al Gore and now Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.). At least a third of the total -- many sources believe more than half -- was raised by 631 people. Dabei haben die Bush-Supporter ein komplexes Fundrasing-System geschaffen, das die engen Finanzierungsregeln des US-Congress umgeht: When four longtime supporters of George W. Bush in 1998 developed a name and a structure for the elite cadre that the then-Texas governor would rely on in his campaign for president, the goal was simple. They wanted to escape the restraints of the public financing system that Congress had hoped would mitigate the influence of money in electing a president. Their way to do it was to create a network of people who could get at least 100 friends, associates or employees to give the maximum individual donation allowed by law to a presidential candidate: $1,000. The Pioneers have evolved from an initial group of family, friends and associates willing to bet on putting another Bush in the White House into an extraordinarily organized and disciplined machine. It is now twice as big as it was in 2000 and fueled by the desire of corporate CEOs, Wall Street financial leaders, Washington lobbyists and Republican officials to outdo each other in demonstrating their support for Bush and his administration's pro-business policies. "This is the most impressive, organized, focused and disciplined fundraising operation I have ever been involved in," declared Dirk Van Dongen, president of the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors, who has been raising money for GOP candidates since 1980. "They have done just about everything right." Zu den eifrigen Bush-Geldgebern gehören auch zahlreiche Unternehmenschefs aus dem Silicon Valley.