Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Warner's PAC Pulls in $2.5 Million Last Night

Articles are starting to break about Warner's first big fundraiser. I'll keep a running tally on this blog entry. The result was BIG! Warner hauled in $2.5 million in one night in Northern Virginia. Between the Kaine victory and his first fundraising haul, I think Warner has moved up from a long shot to a top tier candidate. Handicapping the race now, I would call it Hillay, followed by Edwards, Feingold and Warner.

MCLEAN -- The budding presidential ambitions of Gov. Mark R. Warner were nourished last night with the commodity all national political aspirants need -- a large dose of cash. Warner's new political-action committee, called Forward Together, collected more than $2.5 million during its first fundraiser, setting a record for Virginia politics.

"I have never seen this kind of enthusiasm for a potential presidential candidate," said former Lt. Gov. Donald S. Beyer Jr., the committee's treasurer. "This is the kind of intensity we saw only after John Kerry got the nomination in 2004."

The money will help pay for Warner's travel and political staff as the soon-to-be ex-governor showcases himself around the country before his presumed presidential bid. It will also finance like-minded candidates around the country, giving Warner a base of support for his presumed run. Read More:

From the Hampton Roads Daily Press, there is a slightly different take with the focus on Warner's credentials.

"There's so many people who see Mark as the single most legitimate alternative to Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination," said Donald Beyer Jr., a former lieutenant governor who is serving as finance chairman for Warner's political action committee.

Clinton, who has captured the hearts of her party's liberal base, is widely touted as a formidable presidential contender. Warner supporters are betting that Clinton would be too easily tagged as a liberal - a label that could dash the party's hopes of recapturing the White House.

"Democrats know the only way we can win in 2008 is with a centrist Democrat, and that one person is Mark Warner," said Thomas J. Lehner, director of public policy for the Business Roundtable and once a top aide to former U.S. Sen. Charles Robb, D-Va. Read more:

The Washington Post has an article here:

"I need your help, your ideas, your energy, your resources," Warner told the crowd. " Together, we can shake things up. Together, we can find leaders who see a little farther down the road. This nation can, and must, do better. If we can do it in Virginia, we can do it in America."

Also another from the Hampton Roads Daily Press here.


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