By: Mark Fitzgerald
James Squires served as Ross Perot’s media adviser in 1992
FORMER CHICAGO TRIBUNE editor James Squires is seriously considering a run for the U.S. Senate against Republican incumbent Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.
In a telephone interview from his farm in Versailles, Ky., Squires said he is still undecided whether to vie as a Democrat or an independent ? or at all.
But Squires ? whose interest in running was first reported nationally by Chicago Sun-Times syndicated columnist Robert Novak ? acknowledged he will have to make a decision fairly soon.
“If you run and you are as unknown as I am, you need time to run the kind of unconventional campaign that I would run. I would think that you would have to be pretty active from July to the end of the year,” he said.
Also pushing Squires toward a decision is Kentucky’s election law, which requires voters to register with a party or as an independent. If he is to run as a Democrat, Squires would have to change his current registration as an independent by October.
Since quitting the Tribune at the end of 1989 after serving more than eight years as editor, Squires has become more involved in politics.
He was Ross Perot’s media adviser during the Texas billionaire’s first, aborted run for the presidency in 1992, and more recently has been a speaker at forums aimed at creating a third party, which Perot’s United We Stand organization in Kentucky has sponsored.
Squires said he even recently bounced off Perot the idea of running for Senate, “although this is not something the Perot people have engineered, as has been suggested.”
State Democratic leaders recently approached Squires about pursuing the party’s nomination.
“If you run as a Democrat, then you have to go out and seek party contributions, and certainly the party contributions carry obligations which I am not interested in at all,” Squires said.
If he runs, Squires said, his biggest issues will be campaign finance reform and term limits.
“Mitch McConnell has been the point man against campaign reform,” Squires said of the one-term incumbent. “He’s also against term limits. There’s about nothing I agree with Mitch McConnell on.”
?(James Squires) [Photo]