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Politics

FEC Wrap: One Day Out

Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson formally launches his bid for U.S. Senate on Thursday, Dec. 1, 2011, at a manufacturing facility in Waukesha, Wis.(AP Photo/Dinesh Ramde)

January 30, 2012

Some fundraising news, just one day away from the Jan. 31 deadline:

Senate:

-- Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson brought in $656,000 in in his first three months raising money for his Senate bid, his campaign announced on Monday. Thompson finished the year with around $544,000 in the bank.

On the surface, Thompson posted a solid number for his first quarter in the race. But considering his long history and deep connections in Wisconsin and DC, the haul isn't overly impressive. Former Rep. Mark Neumann raised $518,000 in the fourth quarter. State House Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald, the third major candidate seeking the GOP nomination, has not released his fundraising numbers yet.

-- Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., raised $1.45 million in the fourth quarter and has more than $4 million in the bank. It's a very respectable haul, and she appears to be in good shape for her reelection campaign: her opponent, Republican state Sen. Michael Baumgartner, raised just $120,000 during his first quarter in the race.

-- Former WWE CEO Linda McMahon announced raising $326,000 during the fourth quarter. The number isn't impressive, but McMahon spent $50 million on her 2010 Connecticut Senate bid, and could self-fund again to whatever extent she wants. She is fundraising in order to build a grassroots network, not because she actually needs to money to run. And her primary opponent, former Rep. Chris Shays, raised just $422,000 -- falling far short of the $1 million goal he had set for himself.

House:

-- New Jersey Democratic Reps. Bill Pascrell and Steve Rothman both filed their year-end FEC reports today, and Pascrell "won" the fourth quarter: He raised over $190,000 and finished the year with over $850,000 raised and almost $1.5 million cash on hand. Rothman raised just under $99,000 in the fourth quarter, over $500,000 for the year, and $1.7 million cash on hand.

-- Though Pascrell outraised Rothman, they weren't actually in competition during the fourth quarter. Their incumbent-versus-incumbent match-up didn't materialize until the very end of December, when almost all donations were already in hand. So Pascrell's camp can celebrate their bigger fourth quarter (and yearly) haul, and Rothman's team can celebrate their greater cash on hand, but we won't really know how the two congressmen are competing in the money race until April.

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