Help for Bush Puts Think Tanks at Risk
Archibald, George, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)
Two tax-exempt conservative think tanks know they are on shaky ground with the intense involvement of their scholars as policy advisers to Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush, their leaders say.
Head officials of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University in California and the American Enterprise Institute in Washington already have placed two of their people - Hoover's Condoleezza Rice and AEI's Lawrence B. Lindsey - on part-time status because their activities for the Bush campaign might violate federal laws prohibiting partisan political involvement or corporate contributions by tax-exempt educational institutions.
Miss Rice, a former White House national security adviser for former President Bush, "has been heavily engaged" as head of George W. Bush's defense-foreign policy campaign advisory team, said John Raisian, Hoover's director.
She took a one-year leave of absence from Stanford's political science faculty to help the campaign but is still being paid by Hoover and maintains an office there, Mr. Raisian said.
Mr. Bush's FEC reports show $9,308 in travel reimbursements to Mr. Lindsey and $6,256 to Miss Rice through June 1, but no salary compensation to either from the campaign. Mr. Lindsey and Miss Rice did not respond to requests for comment.
Mr. Raisian said Miss Rice "is getting some compensation [from Hoover]. She has literally been kind of on a sabbatical. I wouldn't characterize her situation as being fully paid. . . . This was fully expected, and she has told me that, at some point, it's likely that she will be taking a leave of absence so she can fully engage [with the Bush campaign]."
Similarly, AEI's Mr. Lindsey, head of the Bush campaign's economic advisory team, has been placed on "half-time" status and works from his own office in Fairfax, said Christopher C. DeMuth, the think tank's president, who also serves as leader of the Bush campaign's environmental advisory team.
Mr. Lindsey, former economic adviser to Presidents Reagan and Bush and Federal Reserve Board governor, also does corporate consulting work, Mr. DeMuth said.
Seven other Hoover scholars, three from AEI, and dozens from other think tanks and universities around the country were recruited over the past two years to help prepare Bush campaign position papers, proposals and policy content of the Texas governor's campaign speeches, according to brain trust members. …