Incumbent Ivey raises $1M for her unannounced gov’s race

In this Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014, file photo, Republican Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey poses for a portrait on 2014, in Montgomery, Ala. Ivey is seeking a second term Nov. 4 against former Democratic state Rep. James Fields. (AP Photo/Phillip Rawls, File)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey reported Tuesday that she has raised $1 million so far for her still unannounced 2018 gubernatorial campaign.

The fundraising is yet another sign that Ivey, the state’s first Republican female governor, is running in 2018 even though she hasn’t officially announced her plans.

Campaign finance reports filed with the secretary of state’s office showed that Ivey’s gubernatorial campaign committee has gathered a little more than $1 million in donations for the 2018 race.

Previously the state’s lieutenant governor, Ivey was catapulted to the governor’s office in April with the sudden resignation of Gov. Robert Bentley. Bentley resigned the same day that Alabama lawmakers opened impeachment hearings against him in the fallout of an alleged affair with a staffer.

Ivey has demurred at questions about her 2018 plans, saying only that she is focused on “steadying the ship of state.” But in the past two months, she has ramped up 2018 machinery, forming both a campaign committee and a related nonprofit. She also has stepped up public relations activity. She also held an event to mark her first 100 days in office, gave a speech discussing her pride in her administration’s work, and hired an outside public relations firm to work on future projects.

She is not the only gubernatorial contender raising money ahead of 2018.

Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle, who has announced he is running for governor, reported raising a little more than $880,000. Battle, a Republican, has been the mayor of Huntsville for eight years.

Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington, also a Republican, reported raising $268,000 so far in his bid for governor.

On the Democratic side, former Alabama Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb reported raising a little more than $132,000 so far.

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