Newt's the draw at six-figure Chabot fundraiser
A visit from his old boss, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, put another $120,000 in Steve Chabot's already impressive re-election fund Wednesday.
Gingrich, author of the 1994 "Contract With America" that helped wrest control of the House from the Democrats that year, was the featured speaker at a $100-per-plate fundraising luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Downtown.
The event, which was closed to the press, included a $1,000-per-ticket private reception and photo session with the former House speaker.
Gingrich left without talking to the media, but Chabot enthused about the event, which he said raised about $120,000 for his campaign to win an eighth two-year term in the 1st Congressional District.
"It was great; people were more fired up than ever,'' said Chabot, who will face Democrat Steve Driehaus in the fall.
Chabot was one of the freshmen congressmen elected in 1994 who shifted control of the House and made Gingrich speaker.
The haul from Wednesday's event will be added to the slightly more than $1 million in campaign cash Chabot's campaign reported to the Federal Elections Commission last month. Driehaus reported having about $430,000 in the bank as of mid-February.
After the luncheon, Chabot said he is not concerned about once again being targeted for defeat by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC).
"The DCCC has always tried to find some reason to go after me, but it never works," Chabot said.
The night before Gingrich arrived in Cincinnati for the Chabot fundraiser, Ohio Democratic Party chairman Chris Redfern e-mailed a statement criticizing Chabot for not following through on one key provision of the "Contract With America" he signed in 1994 - one which would limited House members to six consecutive two-year terms.
"Congressman Chabot has grown so fond of rubber-stamping the failed policies of George Bush that he's decided to try and remain in Washington indefinitely,'' Redfern said.