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POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Dole’s No-Pose With Scientology, Too Much Sun

August 27, 1996

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (AP) _ Bob Dole is fond of telling crowds that no matter how hard he thinks about it, he can’t come up with anyone whose vote he doesn’t want.

Apparently some of his advisers think otherwise _ at least when it comes to Scientologists.

As the vacationing Dole made his way down Santa Barbara’s main drag, heading for dinner Monday at Joe’s Cafe, he and a crush of autograph seekers drew near a building prominently labeled ``Dianetics _ Church of Scientology Center.″

Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, a top policy adviser to the Dole campaign, eyed the surrounding horde of news photographers and tugged at press secretary Nelson Warfield, pointing out the Scientology center. Its storefront sign would likely land in the photographers’ frames if Dole headed in a straight line down the sidewalk.

``You don’t want him in front of there. Cross him over there, then cross him back,″ Rumsfeld instructed while gesturing across the street.

Dole appeared unaware of the whispering as he was guided to the opposite side of State Street.

Scientology is a Los Angeles-based religious-scientific movement founded in the 1950s by author L. Ron Hubbard that recruits new members aggressively. Critics call it a cult.


Dressed in a sunshine-yellow striped shirt topped by a sport coat, Dole delighted in shaking hands and posing for pictures en route to dinner. As he passed Ted Pearson talking on a pay phone, Dole took the receiver to say hello to Pearson’s wife Amy on the other end of the line.

``Amy. How ya doin’? Are you registered?″ Dole said into the phone. After a moment or two of chitchat, Dole closed with ``I’ll see you November 5th,″ and handed back the phone.

The amused Pearson finished his conversation with his wife and then shrugged. ``I think she tried to ask him about health care and he deflected the question.″


Health care was the topic of another offbeat Dole encounter with the public.

While sunbathing outside his private cottage at the oceanside Biltmore Hotel for three hours, Dole was approached by Dr. Pamela Rand, a vacationing dermatologist from Santa Monica, Calif. As recounted for reporters by her husband, Bud Pell, the doctor asked Dole if he had put on sunscreen.

Yup, Dole said, SPF-4.

That’s not good enough, she replied. The SPF, which stands for a lotion’s sun-protection factor, can number up into the thirties.

Hours later, Dole was sporting a new sunburn. ``Look at this,″ he said, pointing to his reddened nose. ``Dermatologist came by and said, `You shouldn’t be out there.′

`` ... Yup. I got too much sun.″

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