Former Tenn. Rep. Ford Eyes Senate Seat—in NY

Strong support seen among Dem donors irked by Gillibrand
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 6, 2010 10:28 AM CST
Former Vice President Al Gore embraces former Rep. Harold Ford Jr. after Ford introduced Gore at the annual Jackson Day Democratic fundraising dinner in Nashville, Tenn., Saturday, Aug. 29, 2009.   (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
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(Newser) – Former Democratic Tennessee Rep. Harold Ford Jr is considering a primary run against New York's junior senator, Kirsten Gillibrand, this year. Ford, who moved to the Big Apple after losing a 2006 Senate bid in Tennessee, will make his decision within the next month and a half after testing the fundraising waters, friends tell the New York Times. But already, many heavy-hitting donors in his adoptive home state are in his corner.

Though Ford would have to play catch-up with Gillibrand, who had $5.5 million in the beginning of October, he is no slouch in the fundraising department. His 2006 campaign amassed around $15 million, and, tellingly, about 20% of those contributions came from New York. Ford is a centrist Democrat, which could resonate with New York voters who have seen Gillibrand, who once represented a conservative district, migrate toward the liberal policies of senior Sen. Chuck Schumer.

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