Bradley Rounds Up Some Unusual Prospects

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It's an axiom of fund-raising that there's a finite universe of donors who will ante up $1,000 for a presidential contender, but Bill Bradley seems to be breaking the mold. His supporters include heavy hitters in the business world who have never been involved in politics, and even some Republicans. Goldman Sachs president John Thornton hasn't raised money for a candidate before, doesn't even give to the company's political-action committee; but since meeting Bradley nine months ago, he has been asking for and getting checks from friends--including Goldman chairman Henry Paulson, a Republican who's backing John McCain. J.P. Morgan managing director Jackson Tai, a Republican who also avoided politics until getting to know Bradley, a former J. P. Morgan consultant, is helping raise tens of thousands of dollars.

Bradley posted a hefty $4.3 million in the first quarter, and will do even better in the second: Word on the street is that he could report as much as $8 million or $9 million, and Gore supporters are worried that he could top the vice president's take. Bradley finance chairman Louis Susman refused to speculate beyond "more than $6 million," but Bradley will clearly have the cash to be a contender.