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First Gov  

September 30, 1997

S. 25 [as modified] -The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 1997
(McCain (R) Arizona and Feingold (D) Wisconsin)

The Administration strongly supports Senate passage of S. 25, as modified by Senators McCain and Feingold, for the reasons explained in the attached letter from the President dated September 23, 1997.

This bipartisan legislation includes many proposals that have been endorsed by the President since 1992. It will put an end to the "soft money" system, increase disclosure of independent expenditures, and enforce strict prohibitions on contributions from foreign nationals. S. 25 will open the political process and shift power from special interests to ordinary citizens.

S. 25 addresses many of the most pressing needs for reform. While the legislation does not include all the elements of reform the Administration believes are needed, such as voluntary spending limits, restrictions on Political Action Committee (PAC) contributions, and free and discounted broadcast time, the Administration considers S.25 to be an important first step and believes it represents the best opportunity to enact meaningful reform in this Congress.

The Administration strongly opposes any amendments which would undermine campaign finance reform by making this legislation unacceptable to many Members of Congress and to the Administration. For example, pending amendments which would impair the rights of American workers to advocate public policies through organized labor activities, are unacceptable.