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Jane Fonda Among Big Gore Givers

December 8, 2000

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Actress Jane Fonda and at least five other supporters of Vice President Al Gore made six-figure donations to his recount committee, newly released records show.

Stephen Bing, a California screenwriter who wrote a $1 million check to the Democratic National Convention’s host committee last summer, gave $200,000 to Gore’s recount committee. Fonda, top Democratic donor S. Daniel Abraham, California foundation head Sonia Kahn and Tennessee developer Franklin Haney each donated $100,000.

Steven Kirsch, founder of the Internet company InfoSeek.com, donated $500,000.

The committee provided the names of 1,258 donors who gave a total of $3.2 million as of Nov. 27, according to financial disclosure records released Thursday. Since then, the committee has raised another $300,000.

While more than 80 percent of the donors, or 1,018 individuals, gave $200 or less, the recount committee also took in dozens of larger donations, including at least three six-figure contributions. Under federal law, recount committees can accept unlimited donations, although George W. Bush is limiting his contributions to a maximum of $5,000. Bush has raised $7.4 million to pay for his Florida recount expenses.

In September, Fonda contributed $11.7 million to an abortion-rights organization, Pro Choice Vote.

Haney, a longtime supporter of Gore, was the developer of the Portals complex in Washington, D.C., the new home of the Federal Communications Commission. House Republicans accused him of buying political influence to get the FCC to move.

In July, he was acquitted of charges that he used straw donors to mask $100,000 in political donations and lied about it in filings to federal regulators.

Abraham, the founder of the Slim-Fast diet program, was one of several big Democratic donors who reached into their pockets one more time to help finance Gore’s recount operations.

Gore also received $25,000 from Sen.-elect Jon Corzine of New Jersey; $5,000 from Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle’s political action committee; and $1,000 from Democratic consultant James Carville, who ran President Clinton’s 1992 campaign.

The recount committee was incorporated under Section 527 of the Internal Revenue Service code. It reported its contributions and expenditures to the IRS.

While Gore and Bush are raising money to finance their recount operations, the Democratic and Republican parties reported spending millions in the closing weeks of the yet-to-be-concluded 2000 elections.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee spent $17.3 million during the last three weeks of the fall campaign, slightly more than the $15.8 million reported by its Republican counterpart.

Senate Democrats gained four seats Nov. 7 and are tied with the GOP at 50 seats apiece.

Meanwhile, the Republican National Committee said it spent $57 million after Oct. 18, most of it by Nov. 7. The RNC is continuing to raise money, taking in $13.2 million last month.

``Republicans, independents and open-minded Democrats are excited about Governor Bush and the Republican Party’s positive plans for smaller, smarter government and increased opportunity for all Americans,″ RNC Chairman Jim Nicholson said. ``And their enthusiasm has been showing in their generous contributions to the RNC.″

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