Tags: gizzi | vitter | bachmann

Gizzi on Politics: Vitter’s Decision; Georgia Peach; Bachmann Challenge

Tuesday, 16 Apr 2013 03:21 PM

By John Gizzi

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Betting is strong in Louisiana that Republican Sen. David Vitter will run for governor in 2015, when incumbent GOP Gov. Bobby Jindal is termed out of office.

“If [Vitter] is elected, he could name his own successor in the Senate,” said former GOP Rep. Jeff Landry of Louisiana, who recently surprised many observers by opting to launch a new conservative super PAC rather than run for Congress this year.

That would set the stage for an exciting, no-holds-barred race in 2016 for Vitter’s Senate seat.

The last three times, when faced with vacancies in the Senate, Louisiana governors have appointed caretakers who did not run in the next race.

In 1935, Rose Long filled out the term of slain senator-husband Huey, but didn’t run in 1936. In 1948, William Feazel filled out a few months in the term of the late Democratic Sen. John Overton and didn’t run. And in 1972, Gov. Edwin Edwards appointed his wife Elaine to fill out the remaining months of the term of the late Democratic Sen. Allen Ellender.

Georgia State Rep. Seeks to Make GOP History

With the decision of Georgia’s Republican Rep. Paul Broun to run for the Senate next year, signs are strong that his Augusta-area 10th district will send the first woman Republican to Congress in Peach State history.

State Rep. Donna Sheldon, the Georgia House Caucus chairman, said last week she would try to succeed Broun.

Sheldon’s bid got a boost the same week when state Sen. Bill Cowsert, long considered a strong possibility to succeed Broun, said he preferred to remain in the state Senate.

Graves Takes Second Shot at Bachmann Seat

While Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota was in London for the funeral of Margaret Thatcher, businessman Jim Graves, the narrow Democratic loser in 2012, announced he would take another crack at the congresswoman in 2014.

Easily one of the most controversial members of Congress for her outspoken comments on every issue from abortion to allegations of Arab-American officials having ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, Bachmann staved off Graves by about 4,200 votes, or 1.2 per cent of the vote last year.

GOP Hopefuls in Illinois Fundraising Battle

With about 11 months to go before the Republican primary for governor of Illinois, three Republican contenders already are active in the fundraising game.

State Treasurer Dan Rutherford has raised more than $740,000 in his state account and state Sen. Bill Brady, the narrow 2010 loser for governor, has about $280,000 in two different funds.

State Sen. Kirk Dillard, who lost the GOP gubernatorial primary to Brady by about 300 votes in 2010, has raised $105,000 this year.

Millionaire businessman Bruce Rauner has opened an exploratory committee and is likely to fund a campaign from his own vast personal wealth. Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn has yet to say whether he will run for re-election.

John Gizzi is the former political editor for Human Events, working for the conservative weekly from 1979 to 2013. Gizzi is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence, was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002, and has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV talk shows.

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