Mike Huckabee to headline fundraiser for Ky. House GOP in October

08/20/2012 11:27 AM

Mike Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor and Republican presidential candidate, will be the main draw at an Oct. 6 fundraiser in Louisville for the state House Republican trust, GOP lawmakers confirmed.

The fundraiser for the GOP House Trust will be at the Louisville home of Cathy Bailey, the philanthropist and GOP fundraiser who served as U.S. ambassador to Latvia during President George W. Bush’s administration.

Several GOP representatives told Pure Politics on Monday that the fundraiser featuring a national figure like Huckabee is the biggest shot in the arm so far to the GOP’s efforts to pick up the 10 seats necessary to take control of the state House.

“I think it’s huge for us statewide, especially for the challengers and what the event can do for them,” said freshman Rep. Michael Meredith, R-Brownsville.

Meredith is running in a rematch against former Democratic Rep. Dottie Sims in the 17th District. He said he hopes not to need caucus funds so that the money can be spent on GOP candidates in open seats or against other incumbent Democrats. He said after a successful fundraiser last week, he has $30,000 in the bank. Meredith spent $38,000 two years ago with about $12,000 coming from the House trust and the caucus.

Rep. Mike Harmon of Danville — another incumbent Republican in tough re-election fight — said he hopes the Huckabee fundraiser won’t just bring in big dollars.

“It would allow us to bring in some of the little dollars … because this might cause more people stand up and say, ‘Well, I guess the House republican caucus does have a shot,” said Harmon, who was the first Kentucky Republican elected official to back Huckabee during the 2008 Republican presidential primary.

Added Rep. Addia Wuchner, R-Florence: “It’s momentum. It’s excitement.”

House Republicans and GOP candidates found out about the event over the weekend. Republican Leader Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, said on Pure Politics in June that the GOP caucus expects to raise $750,000 this year.

Huckabee has helped out Kentucky Republicans before. He raised money for Republican attorney general candidate Todd P’Pool last fall — an event also at Bailey’s home. And in 2010, Huckabee headlined a Lexington fundraiser for Rand Paul’s Senate bid.


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