Super PAC raises $1 million for Radel opponent

A super PAC supporting a potential primary opponent for Rep. Trey Radel (R-Fla.) has raised more than $1 million.

Values are Vital PAC, which was created by supporters of former state legislator Paige Kreegel (R), pulled in $1,010,000 from two donors in December, according to a campaign finance report. Radel recently attended rehab after pleading guilty to cocaine possession.

The group got about $500,000 each from Las Vegas attorney Martin Burns and Miami retiree Ronald Firman, who according to the Tampa Bay Times are friends of Kreegel. The contributions were first reported by Bloomberg News's Greg Giroux.

A super PAC aide has said the group isn't focused on one candidate or on opposing Radel, but its name suggests the campaign would provide a contrast to Radel's drug use, and the two donors and a super PAC consultant both supported Kreegel in her 2012 campaign, when she finished second to Radel in the primary.

Kreegel isn't yet in the race, and Radel hasn't said whether he will seek reelection this year either. Radel, though, has so far resisted calls for him to resign.

Other potential candidates for the seat include former congressman Connie Mack (R-Fla.).

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.

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Aaron Blake · January 2, 2014