Former South Carolina governor Mark Sanford raised $334,397 over the past two months in his bid for a South Carolina House seat, campaign finance reports filed Friday show. He has a couple high-profile and deep-pocketed allies in his quest to regain political office, including billionaire GOP donor David Koch.
A special election for the seat vacated by Sen. Tim Scott (R) is being held March 19; the general election is May 7.
Koch, who launched the conservative outside group Americans for Prosperity, gave $2,500 to Sanford's House campaign. So did Foster Friess, a major back of Rick Santorum's presidential campaign.
Sanford also got $500 from the campaign of Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C.). In 2012, Rice beat Sanford's former lieutenant governor, Andre Bauer, in a Republican primary. Thanks to some leftover primary cash from his 1998 House run, Sanford has $364,714 on hand.
Elizabeth Colbert Busch, the sister of comedian Stephen Colbert, is the likely Democratic nominee. She raised almost as much as Sanford at $309,559 and has $208,630 on hand. She hasn't gotten any money directly from her brother, but she has gotten $2,600 from Evelyn McGee and $2,500 from Evelyn Colbert. Stephen Colbert's wife is Evelyn McGee Colbert. Trevor Potter, the Republican Washington lawyer hired to help the comedian start a super PAC, gave $500.
Sanford outraised his primary rivals, but some are competitive. Teddy Turner, son of mogul Ted Turner, raised $376,433 — including $245,000 of his own cash — and has $99,178 on hand. State Sen. Larry Grooms raised $223,815 and loaned himself $100,000; he has $208,493 on hand. State Rep. Chip Limehouse raised $140,115 and loaned himself $400,000; he has $42,657 on hand. Former state senator John Kuhn raised only $50,103 but lent his campaign $500,000. He has $131,295 on hand.