McAuliffe's Fundraising Chops Worry Va. Gov Rivals

Former DNC chair's charm, huge rolodex, could upend race
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Dec 29, 2008 11:10 AM CST
Terry McAuliffe, potential Virginia gubernatorial candidate and former campaign chairman for Hillary Rodham Clinton, arrives at Clinton's home Wednesday, May 14, 2008 in Washington.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
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(Newser) – Terry McAuliffe is planning a run for governor of Virginia, and, given the Democrat's formidable rep as a fundraiser, he’s looking like a major factor, reports the Washington Post. Virginia has little campaign finance regulation, meaning that McAuliffe, with his national network of deep-pocketed friends and his skill at charming new supporters, could raise as much as $80 million. “I think the sky is the limit,” says a former federal elections commissioner.

McAuliffe’s rivals weren’t counting on having to face Daddy Warbucks; advisers to his Democratic competitors peg the cost of running in the primary around $3 million but say McAuliffe could triple that. Brian Moran, a state representative, has resigned his job to focus on fundraising. “Virginia is not for sale,” Moran told McAuliffe in a recent forum.