A super PAC that supports Sen. David Vitter raised a whopping $750,000 in the past six months to aid the Louisiana Republican's re-election or a possible gubernatorial bid in the next couple of years.
The Fund for Louisiana's Future will report more than $700,000 in the bank at the end of June, according to figures provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call before they plan to file later this week.
The super PAC is set up to help Vitter with his re-election in 2016, or a potential gubernatorial bid in 2015. In January, veteran GOP fundraiser and attorney Charlie Spies filed paperwork with both the Federal Election Commission and Louisiana election officials to create the super PAC. Spies argued the strong showing "plays into the context of his emergence as the leader of the conservatives and Republicans in Louisiana.”
Gov. Bobby Jindal cannot seek another term next year because he is term-limited. It's highly unlikely he would support Vitter to succeed him given the two Bayou State Republicans have a notoriously frosty relationship.
“The possibility of his running for governor has generated strong support within the business community in Louisiana, which is looking for conservative leadership in the state," Spies said. "Sen. Vitter has been a key part of supporting conservative state-level candidates that have made the legislature Republican for the first time since reconstruction, and there is sentiment in Louisiana that there’s time for a conservative governor also.”
Vitter has not publicly acknowledged interest in a gubernatorial run, but he appeared at a weekend event for The Fund for Louisiana's Future in May. Candidates can make such appearances for super PACs as long as they do not directly raise funds for them.
More than 150 donors contributed to the super PAC, and 95 percent of them are from Louisiana, Spies added. In addition to being the super PAC's treasurer and counsel, Spies worked on Vitter's previous campaigns.
Super PAC donations are unlimited at the federal level. But Louisiana election rules capped donations to The Fund for Louisiana's Future at $100,000.