18 July, 2006

Some Final, Random Thoughts On 2Q Fundraising

The mid-year financial disclosure period is (mercifully) drawing to a close. It's tedious work finding the numbers, but important to know nonetheless.

SENATE: What's there to say here. Hillary Clinton has $22 million on hand. John Spencer's performance was notable. The Republican candidate, who now must be considered the front-runner for the GOP nomination, outraised his opponent KT McFarland by 5 to 1 in the quarter - $1.2 million to about $224,000. Cash is not the only reason to put Spencer in the frontrunner category. He has the party endorsement and his baggage, though definitely there, is less than McFarland's. The Journal News put it best in a recent article, which basically said KT has no money and no agenda. Democratic challenger Jonathan Tasini keeps on trucking against the odds. He raised $140,000 - all grass roots money - and filed petitions with 40,000 names on them, nearly three times what he needs to force a primary with Clinton. Clinton has said she won't challenge Tasini's petitions. That could be a gesture of political kindness (ya right!) or, more likely, an effort to give the anti-war Democrats one less reason to be ticked off at the senator. I think it's safe to say it's the latter.

CONGRESS: We pretty much exhausted this one in a previous post, but I think it must be said that the 19th District race is down to three Democrats, and maybe even two. Both John Hall and Judy Aydelott had good fundraising quarters (Hall's was better but Aydelott still has more cash on hand) and impressive petition filings (though Aydelott's are being challenged). Ben Shuldiner did fairly well with the petitions but fell off in the fundraising department. Jim Martorano and Darren Rigger have anemic cash-on-hand totals.

GOVERNOR: The most interesting thing to say here is that the Democrats' No. 2 candidate, Tom Suozzi, did significantly better in the fundraising department in the April-June quarter than the GOP's only candidate. Despite being ostracized by his party, Suozzi was able to raise $4.1 million for his unlikely bid to beat Eliot Spitzer ($16 million still in the bank) this fall. Suozzi has $2.8 million still on hand. Faso, also not the favorite of his party's leaders during the pre-convention period, is having trouble bringing in cash. He raised just $1.5 million in the second quarter and has just $1.4 million to spend at this point.


ATTORNEY GENERAL: To me the story here is that Jeanine Pirro - the GOP candidate who is running a double-digit deficit in the polls to Andrew Cuomo. Pirro outraised the Democratic front-runner $2.7 million to $2.1 million since January. Cuomo has three times as much cash on hand though, at $6 million. Another surprise. Sean Patrick Maloney, a Democrat who barely registers in most polls, raised more funds since January than the No. 2 Democrat in the race, Mark Green. Maloney raised $750,000 to Green's $700,000. And, if anybody has seen a figure for Charlie King, please let me know. Can't seem to find anything on him - official or otherwise.

STATE SENATE: Just want to take a look at one race here - the marquis race locally and probably statewide, the 35th District. In 2004, Republican incumbent Nick Spano defeated Andrea Stewart-Cousins by 18 votes after months of recounting and legal posturing. This time around Spano has made a concerted effort to get his message out, and he has been raking in the cash at a pretty good clip. In the April-June quarter, Spano raised $536,000 and has $779,000 on hand. Stewart-Cousins, slow to get her numbers in, raised $145,000 in the latest period and has about $156,000 on hand. But, Stewart-Cousins only had about $50,000 to play with at this point in the race in 2004, and she did an awful lot with that.

NOTE:The time-off on this post (below) is inaccurate. The item was posted at 1:26 p.m. EDT.

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