Alaska Republican Senate hopeful Joe Miller has hired a prominent Washington, D.C., fundraiser to help fuel his general election campaign against Sitka Mayor Scott McAdams (D).Miller, a Fairbanks attorney who narrowly ousted Senate Conference Vice Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski in last months GOP primary, has tapped Republican fundraiser Mike Gula, whose clients include GOP Sens. Jim DeMint (S.C.) and Richard Shelby (Ala.). DeMint stayed neutral in the primary contest, but he enthusiastically endorsed Miller after Murkowskis concession earlier this week.One Republican lobbyist said Miller should be able to raise significant funds downtown, noting that Murkowski ranking member on the Energy and Natural Resources Committee never enjoyed the strongest relationships with K Street. The lobbyist also suggested that Democrats may not pressure lobbyists to stay neutral in the race given the likelihood that the seat will stay in GOP hands. There are many Republicans on K Street so unhappy with Lisa that this is a step up, this source said. Its a winnable seat, and theres no way that Republican leadership is going to allow this to go south.Miller is considered the favorite over McAdams in conservative-leaning Alaska. In a radio interview this week, Miller said his top two committee requests, should he win in November, would be Judiciary and Armed Services. Gula is in the process of assembling a K Street steering committee on behalf of the Miller campaign, and sources say he would not have taken Miller on if he didnt think he could raise political action committee money for him. According to his firms website, Gulas other Senate challenger clients include Kelly Ayotte in New Hampshire, Dan Coats in Indiana and Dino Rossi in Washington state.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.