Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 1:08 pm
Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter will be a candidate in Louisiana's 2015 governor's race.
Vitter announced his plans in an email to supporters on Tuesday, saying "I believe that as our next governor, I can have a bigger impact addressing the unique challenges and opportunities we face in Louisiana."
The Associated Press obtained the announcement from Vitter's staff.
Vitter's announcement ends months of speculation. His decision is expected to influence which other potential candidates enter the race.
A Washington fundraising heavyweight is helping to set up federal and state super PACs to support U.S. Sen. David Vitter, a move that heightens speculation that Vitter is eyeing a bid to run for governor.
Lawyer Charlie Spies told The Associated Press that Vitter supporters filed paperwork Monday with federal and state agencies creating The Fund for Louisiana's Future, a pro-Vitter political action committee.
The federal super PAC could support a Vitter re-election bid in 2016, while a state PAC could aid him if he decides to launch a gubernatorial campaign in 2015.
U.S. Senator David Vitter has been named deputy Senate whip and will take over as the top ranking Republican on the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
The committee has jurisdiction over levees, the Army Corps of Engineers, the Environment Protection Agency, and two major bills coming up this year: the highway bill and the Water Resources Development Act.
Vitter also remains on the Small Business, the Armed Services, the Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs committees.
U.S. Sen. David Vitter says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will award a $100,000 grant to the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority to help fight the Gulf of Mexico's "dead zone."
Vitter says the grant will be used to help reduce hypoxia, or low oxygen levels in the Gulf, caused by increased nutrients transported from the Mississippi River.
U.S. Sen. David Vitter is highlighting his role as Louisiana's lone member on the congressional committee that drew up a final version of the federal highway bill. But he's omitting the detail that the bill blows an $859 million hole in Louisiana's Medicaid funding.
As President Barack Obama was set to sign the measure into law Friday, Louisiana's Democrats were questioning Vitter's role in slashing the Medicaid dollars and asking if he fought against the cuts.