A handful of Republican operatives are scheduled to host a fundraiser later this week to boost a challenger to a longtime House Republican.
Political consultant Taylor Griffin is running against Rep. Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., a 10-term member who is frequently at odds with his party .
Griffin's backers include a cadre of Republicans who worked with him during the Bush administration. Hosts for the fundraiser include Brian Walsh, a Republican consultant who works with the National Republican Senatorial Committee; Matt Rhoades, Mitt Romney's 2012 campaign manager; and several of Griffin's colleagues from his former political consulting firm, Hamilton Place Strategies. It's not often that such established operatives raise money for a challenger to an incumbent.
But multiple national GOP operatives unaligned in the North Carolina race shrugged it off, citing Jones' rocky history with leadership. Sources close to Griffin underscore their decade-plus ties to the candidate.
"That's the world that Taylor comes from and it's not the world of Mr. Jones," Jones' campaign aide Jonathan Brooks said. "So, it's not a surprise there."
Griffin raised more than the incumbent in the fourth quarter. Jones maintained the cash-on-hand edge.
The primary is on May 6.