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Series IV. Campaign for Governor Opposition Research, 1955-1978

Scope and Content Notes:

As campaign manager Waldman kept meticulous files on other candidates in the governor’s race, known familiarly as opposition research. Knowing opponents’ past records, and current platform and actions can be a critical determinant in an election. The depth of material prepared and accumulated by the Thornburgh campaign staff is a testament to the thoroughness of campaign research and where “no surprises” was a mantra. It was prudent also to be knowledgeable about the primary Democratic candidates, not knowing which would be Thornburgh’s opposition in a general election should he win the primary. There are clippings for each candidate, candidate assessments, plus biographical material both for Republicans and Democrats. This series is further divided into three subseries: Primary Candidates, General Election Candidate Assessments, and General Election Candidate News Clippings. The materials date from 1974 to 1978. Additional and significant material about the candidates can be found in the Dick Thornburgh Papers.

Subseries 1. Primary Election Candidates, 1977-1978

Scope and Content Notes:

In the primary election Thornburgh was opposed by six Republican candidates, he being the only “western” candidate. This comparatively large number of candidates divided the votes considerably, and the balance between east and west candidates became a significant factor. Additionally, it is fair to say that of all the candidates in both parties, Thornburgh was perhaps the least well known across the Commonwealth. On the Democrat side, there were several candidates, again with one from Western Pennsylvania, Pete Flaherty, Pittsburgh’s former Mayor. There are some preliminary “how to” files, and then the candidates are listed alphabetically, first Democrats (D) and then Republicans (R). The majority of the material in this subseries dates from 1977 to 1978.


Box 7
Folder 1 Opposition Research Guidelines prepared by Republican National Committee, undated
Folder 2 Lieutenant Governor candidates, Republican and Democrat, 1978
Folder 3 News Digests about Republican and Democrat candidates for Governor, April 1978
Folder 4 Robert P. Casey (D) - news clips, January-February 1978
Folder 5 Robert P. Casey (D) - news clips, March-April 1978
Folder 6 Pete Flaherty (D) - news clips, January-February 1978
Folder 7 Pete Flaherty (D) - news clips, March-April 1978
Folder 8 Ernest Kline (D) - news clips, January-February 1978
Folder 9 Ernest Kline (D) - news clips, March-April 1978
Folder 10 Robert Butera (R) - candidate assessment, 1977-1978
Folder 11 Robert Butera (R) - Butera Committee bulletins, 1977-1978
Folder 12 Robert Butera (R) - correspondence to and from, including Thornburgh, 1977-1978
Folder 13 Robert Butera (R) - Butera Committee brochures, 1978
Folder 14 Robert Butera (R) - Finance reports, November 1977, March 1978
Folder 15 Robert Butera (R) - news clips, January-February 1978
Folder 16 Robert Butera (R) - news clips, March-May 1978
Folder 17 Henry Hager (R) - resume, brochures, clippings, 1978
Folder 18 Henry Hager (R) - news clips, January-March 1978
Folder 19 Henry Hager (R) - news clips, April-May 1978
Folder 20 David Marston (R) -correspondence, bio, brochures, 1977-1978
Folder 21 David Marston (R) - news clips, January-February 1978
Folder 22 David Marston (R) - news clips, March 1978
Folder 23 David Marston (R) - news clips, March 1978
Folder 24 David Marston (R) -news clips, April 1978
Folder 25 Arlen Specter (R) - candidate assessment, correspondence to, articles, and updates, 1973-1978
Folder 26 Arlen Specter (R) - Announcement and platform, 1977-1978
Folder 27 Arlen Specter (R) - Committee updates and newsletters, 1977-1978
Folder 28 Arlen Specter (R) - campaign committee brochures, 1978
Folder 29 Arlen Specter (R) - committee correspondence, 1977-1978
Folder 30 Arlen Specter (R) - news clips, January-February 1978
Folder 31 Arlen Specter (R) - news clips, March-May 1978
Folder 32 Richard Schweiker (R) - news clips, December 1977
Folder 33 Other candidates (R) - Jacobsen, Watson, January-March, 1978
Folder 34 Candidates binder (R), 1978

Subseries 2. General Election Candidates, 1955-1978

Scope and Content Notes:

This material documents the General Election Candidates and their issues. In the General Election the opposition research focused on the two principal Democrat candidates: Pete Flaherty for Governor and Robert Casey for Lieutenant Governor. That Flaherty and Casey were both from Pittsburgh presented an unusual circumstance, with Thornburgh also a Pittsburgher. Flaherty had the reputation of being a successful former Mayor of Pittsburgh and previously had run an unsuccessful campaign for U.S. Senate. Thornburgh, on the other hand, was little known outside Western Pennsylvania. Casey became the Democrat Lieutenant Governor candidate due to the coincidence of having precisely the same name (Robert P. Casey) as the former auditor general of Pennsylvania who was a gubernatorial candidate in the Primary. Running among fifteen lesser known persons, the “wrong Bob Casey” was selected, having no political or public service experience whatsoever. On the Republican side, William W. Scranton III, son of the well known and much admired former Governor, became the choice for Lieutenant Governor and actively participated in the campaign. Candidate research included Scranton as well as the Democrats since Thornburgh needed to know the background and issues important to his potential Lieutenant Governor. The major research focused on Flaherty and the background topics are those from a binder distributed to campaign staff. The Dick Thornburgh Papers contain much relevant information to this series. The materials in this subseries date from 1955 to 1978.


Box 8
Folder 1 William W. Scranton III (R), biographical material, 1978
Folder 2 William W. Scranton III (R), attachments, 1972-1978
Folder 3 Robert P. Casey (D), assessment, 1974-1978
Folder 4 Pete Flaherty, binder memo, July 6, 1978
Folder 5 Pete Flaherty, biographical, 1978
Folder 6 Pete Flaherty, political career, 1955-1974
Folder 7 Pete Flaherty, Pittsburgh City Councilman, 1966-1969
Folder 8 Pete Flaherty, Mayor of Pittsburgh, 1965-1975
Folder 9 Pete Flaherty, Mayor of Pittsburgh, 1970-1976
Folder 10 Pete Flaherty, “The City, Before, During and After Pete,” 1969-1978
Folder 11 Pete Flaherty, US Deputy Attorney General, March-November 1977
Folder 12 Pete Flaherty, political alliances, 1969-1977
Folder 13 Pete Flaherty, finances, 1976-1978
Folder 14 Pete Flaherty, primary issues, and general updates, 1970-1978
Folder 15 Pete Flaherty, editorials and miscellaneous clips, 1969-1975
Folder 16 Pete Flaherty, “A Second View,” with attachments, 1969-1975
Folder 17 Pete Flaherty, running for Governor, announcement, January 23, 1978
Folder 18 Pete Flaherty, campaign ’78, 1978
Folder 19 Pete Flaherty, primary ’78 contributors list, 1977-1978
Folder 20 Pete Flaherty, Flaherty-Casey finances, 1978

Subseries 3. General Election Candidate News Clippings, 1978

Scope and Content Notes:

This series contains the newspaper clippings from the campaign and are separated by candidate and month in the original order that they were prepared and distributed to campaign staff. There are very few clippings for Robert P. Casey since he had been told by the Pete Flaherty campaign to stay teaching rather than complicate the campaign as he did the first few times he appeared with undesirable results. Ultimately it was telling that the students at his school endorsed William W. Scranton. To appreciate the specific status of the campaign, similarly dated clippings from each candidate could be reviewed and compared. There are very few articles from early November, since election day was November 7, and clippings and candidate comments were no longer useful. The material dates from May to early November 1978.

Folder 21 Scranton, May-June 1978
Folder 22 Scranton, July 1978
Folder 24 Scranton, September 1978
Folder 25 Casey, May-June 1978
Folder 26 Casey, July-October 1978
Folder 27 Flaherty, May-June 1978
Folder 28 Flaherty, July-August 1978
Folder 29 Flaherty, September 1978
Folder 30 Flaherty, October 1978

Box 9
Folder 1 Thornburgh, May-June 1978
Folder 2 Thornburgh, July 1978
Folder 3 Thornburgh, August 1978
Folder 4 Thornburgh, September 1978
Folder 5 Thornburgh, September 1978
Folder 6 Thornburgh, October 1978
Folder 7 Thornburgh, October 1978
Folder 8 Miscellaneous clippings, November 1978