He may not be running for president, like his junior colleague, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). He may not be running for governor, as the third member of Vermont's congressional delegation, Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.), is considering doing.
But Vermont's senior senator is up for reelection to an eighth six-year term next year, and he's already collecting cash from Vermont's business — and lobbying — community. Leahy is hosting a $100-$500-per-person fundraiser Friday evening at the eponymous and lengthily named ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center/Leahy Center for Lake Champlain.
"This is part of our early organizational efforts to raise funds and generate early support for Sen. Leahy's reelection campaign," says Leahy campaign manager, Carolyn Dwyer.
The host list is a who's who of Vermont muckety-mucks.
Among them: developers Robert Miller and Ernie Pomerleau, Burton Snowboards founders Jake and Donna Carpenter, Sugarbush Resort owner Win Smith, AllEarth Renewables CEO David Blittersdorf, Sen. Dick Mazza (D-Grand Isle), Boys & Girls Club of Burlington executive director Mary Alice McKenzie and potential gubernatorial candidate Matt Dunne.
The crowd also includes a number of registered Vermont lobbyists, such as John Hollar, Claire Buckley, Alex MacLean and Brendan Cosgrove.
"Sen. Leahy enjoys the support of a broad continuum of Vermonters who do all sorts of work," Dwyer explains.
Leahy, who won his first Senate term in 1974, won't hold a formal campaign kickoff event until "closer to the date of the primary" in 2016, Dwyer says, but he'll work to ensure he has "the resources necessary to mount a successful reelection campaign."
In April, Leahy reporting having nearly $1.6 million in his campaign account.