The first finance reports of the presidential race show Lamar Alexander raising most of his money in his native Tennessee, Bob Dole doing well among former top government officials and Phil Gramm outpacing them both with $8 million in contributions.
Alexander’s initial report, covering the period from Jan. 1 through March 31, is top-heavy with Tennessee money, the product of a series of fund-raisers there. About $3.2 million of his $5.2 million so far is from his home state.
Senate Majority Leader Dole, the early front-runner in the GOP race, shows receipts of $4.4 million. His report includes donations from lobbyists, former Cabinet secretaries and current and former members of Congress. He’s also drawn contributions from the ranks of the federal bureaucracy.
Gramm has gotten money from everywhere, raising $8 million and leaving no state untouched.
Meanwhile, it is evident that seasoned politicos - inside the Beltway and out - are playing it cautious at this early stage of the campaign. That means being generous to more than one candidate.
For example, Alexander has received $1,000 contributions from former Nixon aide and Bush campaign official Fred Malek and his wife. But Dole, too, has received $2,000 from the couple.
Likewise, former Bush Commerce Secretary Robert Mosbacher and his wife, Georgette, have donated $1,000 apiece to Alexander, who also served in Bush’s Cabinet. But they’ve given $1,000 apiece to Dole, too.