Well, there is probably no point in any additional circular bush beating, so here it is:
We have heard — and this is just a little better than speculation at this point — that West Corp. CEO Tom Barker is thinking about running for the GOP Senate nomination. At this point, this name is not much of a secret.
We attempted to contact Barker to confirm, deny or expand upon this, but have not heard back from him. We imagine that at this point he may respond to one of the MSM outlets.
We know that he has some cash on him. We know that he has supported local Republicans in the past. But frankly, we don’t know for sure his level of interest, or if he is interested, how much of his own interest he would be willing to spend to fund a nascent campaign.
But, it makes it all the more an interesting race, and there you go.
If Barker contacts us, or tells anyone else that he is NOT running, and that he does not have any interest, don’t be that surprised. But, again, we feel that more info is better than less, and you now know what we know.
In the money department, Don Stenberg announced his 2011 Fourth quarter fundraising results.
His campaign notes that he raised “over $250,000 for the quarter” putting him at about $364,000 for the cycle. He has $177K COH.
Of course, Stenberg himself will tell you (or Tweet you) that South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint’s support has been crucial to his campaign. And that DeMint’s Senate Conservative Fund PAC raised Stenberg about $207,000 in Q4. So, that means that the Stenberg camp probably raised around $43,000 themselves.
In the mean time, DeMint looks to spend another $300K for Stenberg on TV. And DeMint is apparently in the field polling for Stenberg as well.
The Jon Bruning camp is also coming out with their numbers today.
They report that they raised $400K during Q4 2011, and have raised nearly $2.8M for the cycle. Bruning currently has $1.7M COH. They also note that they have donors from all 93 Nebraska counties.
We are looking forward to the Bruning – DeMint debates soon.
Bob Kerrey is still trying to decide if he should move his family to Virginia, or maybe even Washington DC itself, so that he can run for Senate in Nebraska. To help in his decision, he is visiting the Original Ray’s Pizza in New York. All of them.
It may be a while.
Also, here is the :30 second version of the latest Stenberg ad, this time paid for by “Freedomworks for America”.
Quite the crowd there at “Elmwood Park”, yeah?
**UPDATE at 3:00pm!**
Apparently there was a problem with comments. I did not shut them down — at least not intentionally. Fixed now. Comment on.