Allies of GOP Sen. Orrin Hatch have launched a multimillion-dollar fundraising campaign to build a center honoring the chairman of the powerful Senate Finance Committee — and they've begun hitting up Utah-based donors, K Street lobbyists and major corporations, according to sources familiar with the efforts.
Hatch signed off on the effort by supporters, launched about a year ago, to create a nonprofit called the "Orrin G. Hatch Foundation." They're aiming to raise tens of millions of dollars for a “Hatch Center,” which would be located at a university in Utah and function as a research library.
It would house several thousand boxes of Hatch's official Senate papers, as well provide a "place of civic engagement for students and the broader community," according to a pamphlet circulated to potential donors. Hatch, the longest-serving Republican in the Senate, was first elected to the chamber in 1976.
For months the foundation has been quietly seeking to raise money without drawing public attention. The fundraising operation for the nonprofit has ties to Hatch’s political fundraiser, Heather Larrison. They’ve held at least one official gathering for K Streeters, many of whom represent clients before the Finance Committee.
Several sources said Hatch’s supporters have reached out to pharmaceutical and tech companies as they look to solicit high-dollar contributions.