Mikulski raises $1 million in 6 months Her campaign funds far exceed GOP foes'

Campaign 1998

July 17, 1998|By David Folkenflik | David Folkenflik,SUN NATIONAL STAFF

WASHINGTON -- Barbara A. Mikulski has promised that she will not take a single vote for granted in her bid to win a third six-year term in the Senate against a gaggle of political novices. Election finance documents released yesterday suggest that the Maryland Democrat isn't taking a single dollar for granted, either.

In the first six months of 1998, Mikulski raised nearly $1 million, $565,000 of which was donated between April 1 and June 30. Her campaign has already spent $527,000 this year but still has $1.67 million in the bank, according to papers filed with the Secretary of the Senate.

That's far more than any of her Republican challengers.

The campaign records of one of them, George W. Liebmann, a Baltimore lawyer, indicate that he received about $16,000 in contributions.

The campaign of Kenneth L. Wayman II, owner of an Ellicott City software company, received $5,487 in donations and a $19,000 loan from the candidate; and John Taylor, a resident of Crofton, ++ received a grand total of $315 -- just enough to cover the $290 fee of registering to run for the Senate from Maryland.

Dr. Michael Gloth, head of the geriatrics department at Union Memorial Hospital, received about $25,900, and has $9,400 on ++ hand, said his brother and campaign treasurer, David Gloth.

All the Republican candidates acknowledge Mikulski's financial advantage but say they will need far less money to win their party's primary on Sept. 15. They then expect more money to roll in for the November general election.

"It's unfortunate that [Mikulski's] voting record is so horrendous that she has to spend $1.7 million to save her job," Gloth said yesterday.

Mikulski campaign officials say they need the money to pay for expensive TV ads that reach voters in both the Baltimore and Washington areas and to ward off possible negative ads from outside conservative groups.

Mikulski is far from the only incumbent senator with little-known opposition who is seeking significant money to win re-election. Sens. Christopher J. Dodd of Connecticut and Bob Graham of vTC Florida, both Democrats, face scant opposition this fall. But Dodd raised more than $700,000 from April through June and has $3.2 million to spend. Graham raised $800,000 in the same period and has $3.1 million in the bank, having already spent $952,000 in the first half of 1998.

Among Mikulski's individual donors are homemakers, lawyers, nurses, casino chieftains, insurance company executives, hospital presidents, fellow senators and a welter of lobbyists. She received about one-third of her donations in the past six months from political action committees, which represent special interests, ranging from educators to defense contractors, with a stake in legislation before Congress.

Pub Date: 7/17/98

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