House candidates look to break fundraising records again in third quarter
Candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives are raking in unprecedented amounts of money.
Third-quarter fundraising numbers — which include money contributed to candidates in June through September — must be filed with the Federal Election Commission by Oct. 15. However, that hasn’t stopped dozens of House candidates from releasing their impressive numbers early.
Fundraising for Democratic House candidates appears to be hotter than ever. More than 60 Democratic House candidates raised more than $1 million in the third quarter, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) Chairman Ben Ray Lujan announced last week.
Several Democratic candidates reported third-quarter hauls that broke records in their respective districts, including Danny O’Connor in Ohio’s 12th District ($6 million) — which included his special election — Amy McGrath in Kentucky’s 6th ($3.65 million) and Mikie Sherrill in New Jersey’s 11th ($2.6 million). All three candidates raised significantly more in the third quarter than in either of the first two.
“We don’t have all of the numbers yet, but this democratic House fundraising is just off the charts,” said Kyle Kondik, managing editor of Sabato’s Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics. “Looking back at 2016, the biggest third-quarter was $1.6 million to Zephyr Teachout.”
Democrats have benefitted from ActBlue, an online fundraising service that raked in more than $385 million for Democratic candidates in the third quarter. Even Democrats in likely-red districts have raised large amounts of money, such as Andrew Janz, who reported raising $4.3 million in the quarter in his race to take California’s 22nd District from Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.).
Select Republican candidates have announced big earnings, too. Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) reported raising $4.8 million in the third quarter — more than the $3.56 million he raised throughout the entire 2016 cycle.
Still, many more Democrats have come out with their fundraising numbers since the start of October, potentially signaling that Republicans were outraised for the third-straight quarter.
“Usually if a candidate has a good number to announce they’ll give it in advance,” Kondik said, adding that most Republican candidates are posting fine numbers that would look great in any other election cycle.
Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.), for example, raised a solid $1.1 million in his re-election bid for Kansas’ 3rd District seat, but his opponent Sharice Davids reported a $2.7 million haul — significantly more than the $344,704 she raised through the first two quarters.
House candidates on both sides easily set records for fundraising in both the first and second quarters last year, but Democratic candidates came out on top.
The third quarter appears to continue an upward trend of spending on what is already a record year for fundraising.
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