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Main Gingrich backer now bankrolling Norm Coleman's super PAC

WASHINGTON — Sheldon Adelson, a Las Vegas casino magnate known in the political world as the main donor to a pro-Newt Gingrich super PAC, has donated $5 million to a group backing Republican House candidates chaired by former Minnesota U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman.

On February 15, Adelson and his wife, Miriam, each gave $2.5 million to the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC "focused solely and exclusively on maintaining the Republican majority in the House of Representatives," according to its website. Coleman is the chairman of the group; former Minnesota Congressman Vin Weber also sits on its board.

The Congressional Leadership Fund was formed last fall to much fanfare among Washington Republicans. The top three Republicans in the House — Speaker John Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Whip Kevin McCarthy — headlined the group's kick-off fundraiser in November.

The group's fundraising has been unremarkable outside of the Adelsons, whose $5 million gift accounts for the lion's share of the group's funding, according to FEC reports filed Sunday. The group brought in $130,000 last fall and, the Adlesons withstanding, only $93,000 between January and March. The group has $5.1 million on hand.

Devin Henry can be reached at dhenry@minnpost.com.

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