Raw tape for The 90's election specials. This tape features interviews with Larry Makinson and Joshua Goldstein of the Center for Responsive Politics, a group that tracks the money that is donated to members of Congress. It is then followed by footage of Eddie Becker's quest to get an interview with the Bush / Quayle campaign.
00:00Copy video clip URL Larry Makinson, the research director, explains his group’s purpose, as well as his group’s findings at the office of the Center for Responsive Politics. The Center tries to track contributions to political campaigns, and find out where the money is really coming from. One deceptive tactic includes people putting “homemaker” as their employer when giving donations. He explains that which industries donate money through Political Action Committees (labor unions, e.g.) and which industries donate through so called personal contributions.
09:39Copy video clip URL Tape cuts, and Makinson shows us on the computer where specific Congressmen get their money. Illinois Representative Dan Rostenkowski gets a modest amount of money in comparison to other politicians.
17:05Copy video clip URL Joshua Goldstein is interviewed. Goldstein tracks “soft money” for the Center for Responsive Politics. He explains how soft money differs from regular contributions, and shows us how specific companies (such as RJR / Nabisco) give large amounts of money, and to what parties. Soft money is only to be used for parties in general, rather than campaigning for individuals.
26:00Copy video clip URL Larry Makinson likens contributors to an airplane, with the soft money contributors sitting in first class, and all other contributors in coach. He goes on to say that those in first class get to decide where the plane flies. Makinson goes on to talk about reporters biasing the elections by favoring who has the most money.
33:00Copy video clip URL Goldstein talks about waste management companies giving a lot of soft money, and “double givers” – giving soft money to both Democrats and Republicans.
35:04Copy video clip URL Makinson tells us that the races for the U.S. House, those races that comparatively few people pay attention to, often receive the most contributions.
40:28Copy video clip URL Makinson speaks about how politicians are packaged by marketing companies saying: “We are not voters, we are consumers.”
42:30Copy video clip URL Makinson advises us to find out who contributes to candidates if we want to find out how that candidate will vote once they are office. “Follow that money.” He tells us how to find out federal contributions.
47:02Copy video clip URL The tape switches to Eddie Becker’s apartment. Becker speaks on the phone with PR representatives from the Bush/Quayle campaign. Becker questions the campaign reps as to why he can’t gain access to the campaign. They seem evasive and tell him that they will get back to Becker.
55:41Copy video clip URL The next day. Becker explains that he never received his returned phone call from the Bush/Quayle press office. He calls them back, and is put on hold.
1:00:30Copy video clip URL Right after someone picks up the phone, the tape drops all audio and video. Audio & video comes back after about a minute. The campaign representative tells Becker that he cannot record sound, only picture. The audio and video are dropped for another minute or so.
01:06:50Copy video clip URL The next day, Becker tapes a few more frustrating phone calls.
01:24:12Copy video clip URL Becker describes some editing instructions to Joel Cohen, and shoots some cutaways.
01:28:07Copy video clip URL Becker leaves his apartment to go to the Bush / Quayle ’92 headquarters. He talks to people outside and waits at reception.
01:38:58Copy video clip URL The actual walk-through of the campaign headquarters. [Which he does not do without sound as he promised.] Halfway through the tour, Becker remarks, “It’s just an office!”, to which his tour guide responds, “That’s what I told you.” This exchange makes the campaign’s refusal to allow sound recording even more confusing. There is no particularly revealing footage.
01:46:40Copy video clip URL Becker is back at home, and tapes more reflections.
01:47:25Copy video clip URL End of tape.