In an early sign that Democrats are in a good position to take back the Senate, Democrats are outraising Republican candidates in all toss-up Senate elections.
In competitive Senate elections — those that the three major election handicappers rate as anything other than solid red or blue1 — Democrats have raised $34.1 million in total contributions in the first six months of 2019, and Republicans have raised $29.3 million. (A handful of minor candidates did not have second-quarter reports posted on the FEC website as of Tuesday at noon, so these numbers may be incomplete.) That gap is especially troubling for the GOP because there are eight Republican incumbents running in those 14 races, and incumbents usually raise more money than challengers early on. While Democrats have only four incumbents running, they’ve raised more than four times as much as their Republican challengers in those races. And in the two open-seat races, Democrats are outraising Republicans $1.9 million to $763,771.
In addition, Democrats are outraising Republicans in all three of the most competitive races — those rated as “toss-ups” — even though two of them have Republican incumbents.
Here are the numbers by state:
— OpenSecrets.org (@OpenSecretsDC) July 19, 2019
Strong Democratic fundraising was one of the biggest indicators of the blue wave in 2018. The fact that the strong fundraising has continued is a warning sign for incumbent Republicans who are going to face Democratic challengers who are better funded and can fight for every single vote.
Fundraising matters because that is money that can be used to combat Republican voter suppression efforts. Get out the vote efforts are very expensive. It costs a lot of money to overcome some of the hurdles to voting that Republicans have established in many states. The FiveThirtyEight analysis doesn’t include Sen. Susan Collins who is now the second most hated Senator in the United States.
Donald Trump is sucking up all of the Republican donor money to line his own pockets.
There is less cash to go around on the GOP side, and the climate is looking good for Democrats to take back the Senate next November.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association