The convention defeat last month of Sen. Bob Bennett, R-Utah, by Utah conservatives, the Club for Growth, and others in the movement has got the other Utah senator scared. Hatch’s campaign is raising funds early for the 2012 elections, in the name of warding off a primary challenge (perhaps by freshman Rep. Jason Chaffetz) with a huge warchest.
A consultant for Hatch’s campaign sent out this email (contact info removed and emphasis added):
From: Joseph Cozzens
Sent: Tuesday, June 22, 2010 11:17 AM
To: Joseph Cozzens
Subject: Senator Hatch Fundraising Breakfast – June 29, 2010
By way of quick introduction, my name is Jo Cozzens and I am working with U.S. Senator Orrin G. Hatch and Kirk Clinkenbeard on the Hatch Election Committe.We left a message on your office phone and I am following up via email in an effort to get in touch with you regarding Senator Hatch’s plan of attack for his upcoming campaign.
As I’m sure you have heard, Senator Bob Bennett was recently defeated in the Utah Republican State Convention. Although he spent over $3million, he was unable to even make it into the primary. With this in mind, Orrin hopes you will be willing to attend one of several upcoming fundraising events in support of his re-election over the next month and if possible, perhaps consider helping organize a grassroots meeting with any members you may have in Utah this summer.
We are trying to send a very strong signal to those that want to take Orrin on, that they will need a major financial commitment. I have attached an invitation to one of our upcoming events, and we would love to see you there. Please get in touch if you are willing and able to help this summer. Thank you very much for your continued support of Senator Orrin G. Hatch.
Hatch Election Committee
The fundraiser will be held at the lobbying firm Alston & Bird, and the hosts are health-care lobbyists:
These clients are a mixed bag of those who supported the bill and those who opposed it. But a fundraiser sponsored by health-care lobbyists may not be the best way to ward off the conservative base.