Sunday, December 04, 2005

Bayh raises $600,000

Indiana's Junior Senator Evan Bayh got some nice gifts for his birthday.
Most people celebrate their birthdays with a candle for each year of their life.

Sen. Evan Bayh, who turns 50 this month, was hoping to get $12,000 per year.

Although his birthday isn't until the 26th, Bayh celebrated with several hundred supporters at the Murat Centre in Downtown Indianapolis on Friday night.

The evening was projected to raise more than $600,000 for Bayh's re-election campaign.

Bayh won't have to defend his Senate seat until 2010, and the nearly $8 million he had on hand at midyear already was one of the largest campaign war chests in the Senate. But Bayh can tap into the money earlier if he decides to run for president in 2008.

Ed Feigenbaum, publisher of the political newsletter Indiana Legislative Insight, said a $600,000 fundraiser in Indiana is "clearly stunning."

"The only thing that Indiana's Republicans can be pleased about," Feigenbaum said, "is that he only turns 50 once."
I offer my early birthday wishes to the Senator. I wish I could have been there on Friday.

The Chicago Tribune pays tribute to the late John Lennon. Stay tuned Thursday for my tribute to the late musician.
McCartney wrote many of the band's most enduring melodies, but Lennon supplied more of the mission statements: "Turn off your mind, relax and float downstream" (from 1966's "Tomorrow Never Knows"), "All You Need Is Love," "You say you want a revolution...," "Come Together."
Tom Daschle is enjoying living his now-private life. He has not ruled out a future run for office--including the presidency.

I have blogged about Otis Hensley, Jr.'s entrance into the gubernatorial race before but here is another article on his entrance.
Kentucky Democratic Party chairman Jerry Lundergan said party leaders are not yet focusing on the race. Instead, they are concentrating efforts on the 2006 elections including county courthouse races and state House and Senate races.

State Sen. Julian Carroll, D-Frankfort, said he's working with Democratic leaders to establish a statewide "network" to consider the party's gubernatorial options. Carroll agreed Democrats should focus on the 2006 elections before moving on to the governor's race.

Carroll, a former Kentucky governor, said he envisions gathering a group that represents "probably a couple of million" Kentuckians including various constituents and special interest groups, Carroll said.

He hopes to have the group completed this month and hold its first meeting in January. Exactly what the group's responsibilities will be remains uncertain, Carroll said. It would be up to those in the "network" to decide their exact purpose, he said.

"The idea is out there," Carroll said. "The idea has yet to have meat put on the bones, I guess you might say."

Until then, party officials are trying to shore up their base and will eventually aim at getting consensus on a single candidate with the best chance of winning, Lundergan said. Otherwise, a primary contest could be fatal to any hopes of regaining the governor's mansion, Lundergan said.

"I think we should take every prospect that the Democrats have and we should all join hands and support the strongest," Lundergan said. "I'm going to support the strongest."

Carroll agreed.

"We've got to use good judgment," Carroll said. "We've got to make certain that we don't get so anxious that we end up cutting each other up so that the Democrat that represents us isn't able to pull the party together for a victory in November (2007)."

As for Hensley, Lundergan said he wasn't dismissing him.

"That's why we live under the flag we live under," Lundergan said. "Every citizen has a right to file. I'm very happy that he filed as a Democrat."

If Hensley winds up being the strongest candidate, Lundergan said he would support him. Otherwise, he would "try to convince" Hensley the party should settle on a single candidate, Lundergan said.
Thanks to a reader, I have learned about Political Money Line. I'm going to look at the site some more in the next few days.

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