Targeted House Republicans Start With More Cash Than Dem Counterparts
For what it's worth, many of the most vulnerable House Republicans start the 2014 cycle in slightly better financial shape than the earliest targeted House Democrats.
In recent days, major campaign groups on either side of the House have announced early target lists for 2014, mostly featuring veteran members. The National Republican Congressional Committee named seven "top targets," mostly in conservative-leaning districts, while House Majority PAC, a Democratic super PAC, said it would be starting early 2013 campaigns against 10 Republicans in moderate-to-liberal districts. Seven of the ten Republicans have over $100,000 in the bank to start the new cycle, which certainly doesn't hurt. Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo., the most cash-poor of these Republicans with under $8,000 on hand, will likely need to recover quickly: Democratic candidates are already lining up to take him on, and one of them already has a statewide donor base built up from an unsuccessful Senate primary in 2010.
Money isn't everything, however: Rep. Gary Miller, R-Calif. might have over $400,000 on hand, but the more important number in California's 31st District is probably 57, which is the percentage of the vote President Obama got in the district in 2012. Miller ran against a fellow Republican last year, but Democrats will make sure they advance a candidate out of the top-two primary in 2014 after missing out this time. Plus, for all of the members, a couple thousand dollars doesn't go as far as it used to, now that a super PAC can change a race at a moment's notice.
Here are the early targeted Republicans and their end-of-2012 cash on hand figures, courtesy the Federal Election Commission:
||Cash on hand|
Meanwhile, six of the seven targeted Democrats have less than $100,000 on hand, byproducts of the nailbitingly close races most of them won in 2012. (Many of the Republican races were close, too, but some of the GOP members were able to coast through the finish line.) Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., did not face a serious challenge in 2012 but starts the next cycle low on cash. Rep. John Barrow, D-Ga., meanwhile, had a big financial advantage in 2012 and used it to cover his conservative district in sharp TV ads, but he basically has to start all over again after getting targeted early by the NRCC last year, too.
||Cash on hand|
* denotes a freshman member; Kirkpatrick previously served in the House but lost her seat in 2010.