Weld, Kerry Accuse Each Other Of Breaking Agreement
BOSTON (AllPolitics, Oct. 24) -- Massachusetts' nasty Senate race is getting nastier with both sides accusing the other of violating a voluntary spending limit.
The race is incumbent Democratic Sen. John Kerry versus GOP Gov. William Weld, both wealthy individuals who agreed previously to cap personal expenditures at $500,000, and hold to an overall cap of $6.95 million. Weld says a recent $400,000 loan, for which Kerry used his own assets as collateral, violates the agreement. He plans to file complaints with the Federal Election Commission and in U.S. District Court.
"John Kerry has broken the spending cap, and he is now breaking the law, as well as demonstrating once again that his word is no good," Weld spokesman Rob Gray declared to The Associated Press.
But the real problem, according to Kerry, is that Weld violated their agreement by spending some $5.4 million on TV advertising, over the agreed $5 million. His campaign treasurer collected records from media outlets of Weld's expenditures.
"I have no intention at this point of spending more than (the cap), but I'm not going to be disadvantaged by their games in how they interpret media expenditures," Kerry told AP.
Weld's campaign contends it had negotiated lower costs from media brokers and said Kerry's complaints were a ruse to cover lackluster fund-raising. Weld called Kerry's new loan a "transparent end run around the agreement, and I think that would introduce a credibility issue if he does it."
The Kerry-Weld race has been one of the most closely watched, and bitterly fought, Senate races this year. The two have sparred heatedly in a series of debates, and with Kerry holding a slight lead in the polls, the race is probably too close to call. But while Massachusetts is heavily Democratic, the moderate Weld has proven popular with Bay State voters and a formidable threat to a Democratic incumbent.
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