Huntsman builds up South Carolina money team
August 25th, 2011
02:23 PM ET
2 years ago

Huntsman builds up South Carolina money team

Columbia, South Carolina (CNN)  – Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman announced a fundraising team for South Carolina, with 2008 John McCain finance committee member Bill Stern serving at the helm as honorary chair.

The former Ambassador to China and governor of Utah announced his run for the White House three months ago and is trailing significantly behind the Republican pack, hovering in the single digits in recent polls.

This announcement comes as Huntsman wrapped up a recent media blitz with a number of national interviews where he criticized others in the presidential nomination field who appear to be building momentum.

Real estate developer Stern was finance committee chairman for Mark Sanford's gubernatorial race and served as South Carolina State Ports Authority chairman under the governor.

The ten members of the state's finance team include "bundlers" who raised loads of cash for McCain's 2008 presidential bid, including John Rainey of Camden and Gayle Averyt of Columbia.

Rainey, chairman of Easlan Capital, served on McCain's finance committee and, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, bundled between $100,000 and $250,000 for the presidential candidate. He and his immediate family contributed a combined $55,600 to federal candidates, parties and PACs during the 2008 election cycle.

A Bush "pioneer," Rainey served on President George W. Bush's finance committee in 2000 and raised $100,000 or more for the 43rd president.  He was also co-chairman of the Sanford for Governor finance committee in 2006.

Averyt is former chairman of Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company and the Center for Responsive Politics' cites the retired businessman as raising between $50,000 and $100,000 for McCain. But prior to supporting McCain, Averyt served as Rudy Giuliani's finance co-chair in South Carolina.

Charleston resident and philanthropist Anita Zucker is another notable get for the Huntsman campaign. The InterTech Group CEO and her late husband, Jerry, contributed to McCain's 2008 presidential campaign.

It's unclear how much money Huntsman has raised to date.  His campaign did not have to file a second-quarter fundraising report because he declared his run for president after the deadline.  His first report will be filed in October after the end of the third quarter.


Filed under: 2012 • Fundraising • Jon Huntsman • South Carolina
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    Sorry Huntsman, Republicans don't like smart intelligent people, they prefer the dumber than dumb.
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    I used to think that Huntsman was pretty smart. Was. Past tense. Now look at the company he keeps. The man has become dumber than the dumbest.

    August 25, 2011 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  2. ConservaFASCISTS/TEAliban/TEAhadists

    If you don't have Sen. Deminted's endorsement, you don't have a chance of winning confedrate, hillbilly, klan country, South Carolina.

    August 25, 2011 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
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