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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Money is Important in Congressional Races

 I have harped on this several times, and am doing it again. Money equals Political Speech. If you (or your candidate) doesn't have money, then it is very hard for them to be heard. They cannot get their message out to the voters. They cannot rent office space, buy or rent equipment, print signs or literature, or place commercials on television and radio.

A candidate who refuses to raise money is one who refuses to avail himself of the opportunity to win elections.

I'll use the 2008 General Election Cycle as an example, and compare it to what info we have so far for the 2010 Election Cycle (as of December 31, 2009). All information is courtesy Open Secrets.

The 2008 Election Cycle for the 11th Congressional District of North Carolina:

Heath Shuler (D) * Winner
(62% of vote)
Raised: $1,670,728
Spent: $769,941
Cash on Hand: $943,706
Last Report:December 31, 2008
legendPAC contributions$815,298(49%)
legendIndividual contributions$824,243(49%)
legendCandidate self-financing$0(0%)

Carl Mumpower (R)
(36% of vote)
Raised: $134,307
Spent: $134,199
Cash on Hand: $107
Last Report:November 28, 2008
legendPAC contributions$0(0%)
legendIndividual contributions$90,131(67%)
legendCandidate self-financing$42,646(32%)

Keith Smith (L)
No reports on record for this candidate.
The votes:

61.96%.....211,112 Heath Shuler
35.38%.....122,087 Carl Mumpower
02.21%.........7,517 Keith Smith

Of course, there were other factors in the race above. Mumpower (and his supporters) spent most of the time attacking fellow Republicans or the Republican Party itself
My suggestion to candidates in the future is to run as a Libertarian or Unaffiliated if you hate the Republican Party so much.

Now for the 2010 Election Cycle...

A look at the numbers in 2010 before the race got underway (as of December 31, 2009):

Raised: $563,822
Spent: $237,311
Cash on Hand: $1,270,216
Last Report:December 31, 2009
legendPAC contributions$282,100(50%)
legendIndividual contributions$260,961(46%)
legendCandidate self-financing$0(0%)

Gregory A. Newman (R)
Raised: $11,275
Spent: $1,261
Cash on Hand: $10,013
Last Report:December 31, 2009
legendPAC contributions$0(0%)
legendIndividual contributions$11,275(100%)
legendCandidate self-financing$0(0%)

Dan Eichenbaum (R)
Raised: $8,212
Spent: $6,975
Cash on Hand: $1,237
Last Report:December 31, 2009
legendPAC contributions$0(0%)
legendIndividual contributions$5,962(73%)
legendCandidate self-financing$2,250(27%)

Jeff Miller (R)
No reports on record for this candidate.

Kenneth D. West (R)
No reports on record for this candidate.

The next report will give us much more information that will allow us to be able to draw some conclusions. The close of books is March 31 and the deadline to file is April 15, so the numbers will be available only a few weeks before the primary. 

As it stands now, just by looking at the numbers, things are looking bleak for the Republican hopefuls. I hope to see some numbers nearing $100,000 then. I am disappointed by the appearance that no one is serious about raising funds per this report. (I understand that a couple of candidates in the race now have only started raising money recently, so we'll see).

If you have a candidate that you support, I expect you to get involved and part with some of your money and part of your time. 

Here are links to the candidate websites (in alphabetical order):

Here is the schedule for the 2010 Primary:

Primary Election Schedule for 2010

  • Monday, February 8, 2010 at 12:00 Noon filing period will open. (passed)
  • Friday, February 26, 2010 at 12:00 Noon filing period will close. (passed)
  • Voter Registration will end on Friday, April 9, 2010. (3 weeks away)
  • Absentee by Mail Request will begin on Monday, March 15, 2010 (started Monday)
  • Absentee by Mail Request will end on Tuesday, April 27, 2010
    *Subject to change due to acts of the NC General Assembly
  • One-Stop Absentee Voting will begin on Thursday, April 15, 2010 and will end on Saturday, May 1, 2010 at 1:00 P.M.
  • Primary, May 4, 2010 Polls open at 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • Canvass Day May 11, 2010 at 11:00 a.m.
  • 2nd Primary if needed, will be on June 22, 2010