Posted: 11:00 am Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

First Quarter fundraising roundup for U.S. Senate, Congress 

By Daniel Malloy

WASHINGTON — Today is the deadline for federal candidates to file their first quarter fundraising reports. We’ll update this post throughout the day on the key races throughout Georgia tate to tell you how the candidates stack up in the money race as of the end of March.

U.S. Senate:

On the Republican side, Rep. Jack Kingston of Savannah sets the pace again, as most of the candidates saw their fundraising jump as the election year dawned. Kingston raised $1.1 million, spent about $2.4 million — much of which was to reserve TV time in the coming weeks — and finished the quarter with $2.1 million on hand.

Businessman David Perdue raised $567,000, nearly double his fourth quarter take, as he surged in the polls and went up on TV. More significantly: his personal money spigot nearly turned off. Perdue only chipped in $6,000 of his own money in the first quarter, likely via in-kind donations of campaign expenses. He finished March with $700,000 on hand, having spent $1.6 million.

Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-Marietta, raised $327,599, spent $243,400 and still had a robust $2,444,697 on hand.

Rep. Paul Broun, R-Athens, brought in $338,600, spent $301,048 and has $224,730 cash on hand.

Former Secretary of State Karen Handel raised $295,682, spent $236,809 and finished with $386,795 on hand.

Democrat Michelle Nunn raised a whopping $2.4 million — by far her best quarter — and finished with $3.9 million cash on hand, spending about $950,000 in the quarter.

What about the outside groups?

A Nunn-allied Super PAC called Georgians Together raised $40,000 in its first few weeks of existence. Of that sum, $20,000 came from attorney James E. Butler, and $10,000 each from former Gov. Roy Barnes and Keith Mason (chief of staff to Gov. Zell Miller).

The Republican-oriented Senate Battleground Fund raised $743,900, much of which came from the Atlanta business community at a fundraiser featuring Mitt Romney. The joint fundraising PAC gave most of that sum to the Republican National Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee, with $46,447 left over. The group’s backers have said its take will support Georgia’s Republican Senate nominee.

First Congressional District (Kingston’s open seat):

Pooler state Sen. Buddy Carter (R) — $121,487 raised, $100,019 spent, $50,000 self-loan, $461,096 on hand.

Savannah surgeon Bob Johnson (R) — $124,729 raised, $76,584 spent, $408,296 on hand.

St. Simons Island businessman John McCallum (R) – $175,016 raised, $206,777 spent, $100,000 self-loan, $372,801 on hand.

Alma farmer and businessman Darwin Carter (R) — $7,420 raised, $17,299 spent, $78,622 on hand.

Brunswick state Rep. Jeff Chapman (R) — $15,480 raised, $49,521 spent, $37,341 on hand.

Richmond Hill Realtor Amy Tavio (D) — $26,121 raised, $22,978 spent, $1,499 self-loan, $4,642 on hand.

Savannah UPS supervisor Brian Reese (D) — $4,770 raised, $6,954 spent, $3,000 self-loan, $815 on hand.

Carter, the front-runner, was outraised by both of his top rivals but still has the most cash on hand heading into the final stretch, in the most cash-flush of Georgia’s U.S. House primaries. Carter, Johnson and McCallum have been airing TV ads for weeks in the relatively cheap markets along the coast.

Fourth Congressional District (incumbent Hank Johnson)

DeKalb County Sheriff Thomas Brown (D) — $108,792 raised, $53,324 spent, $147,296 cash on hand.

Lithonia U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson (D) — $156,398 raised, $148,556 spent, $92,537 on hand.

Johnson ramped up his previously anemic fundraising and topped Brown in amount raised, but Johnson still has considerably less cash on hand than his challenger, an unusual position for an incumbent.

10th Congressional District (Broun’s open seat)

Jackson trucking company owner Mike Collins (R) – $61,001 raised, $79,697 spent, $214,096 on hand.

Dacula state Rep. Donna Sheldon (R) — $82,282 raised, $96,932 spent, $128,398 on hand.

Milledgeville banker and retired Army Col. Stephen K. Simpson (R) — $33.595 raised, $54,359 spent, $67,184 on hand.

Monroe minister and radio host Jody Hice (R) — $88,660 raised, $124,012 spent, $47,022 on hand.

Lexington attorney Gary Gerrard (R) — $26,744 raised, $43,834 spent, $21,734 on hand.

Athens Marine reservist Mitchell Swan (R) — $11,531 raised, $11,273 spent, $1,000 self-loan, $1,257 on hand.

This race remains wide open, but Collins — the son of former U.S. Rep. Mac Collins — has a sizable money advantage for the closing weeks in the inexpensive media markets spanning the district.

11th Congressional District (Gingrey’s open seat)

Marietta businesswoman Tricia Pridemore (R) — $68,366 raised, $55,929 spent, $50,000 self-loan, $238,645 on hand.

Atlanta state Rep. Ed Lindsey (R) — $91,595 raised, $109,475 spent, $168,334 on hand.

Smyrna attorney and former U.S. Rep. Bob Barr (R) — $102,505 raised, $91,416 spent, $20,000 self-loan, $124,963 on hand.

Cassville state Sen. Barry Loudermilk (R) — $114,910 raised, $92,548 spent, $77,162 on hand.

Woodstock retired Army Col. Larry Mrozinski (R) — $5,615 raised, $7,114 spent, $5,543 self-loan, $5,463 on hand.

Pridemore has been saving while Barr has been spending, though the former Congressman who still must be considered the front-runner has tightened up and increased his cash on hand ahead of the final stretch. Loudermilk saw the biggest jump in donations from the fourth quarter and though Lindsey spent more than he raised, he remains well-armed.

12th Congressional District (incumbent John Barrow)

Augusta U.S. Rep. John Barrow (D) — $292,195 raised, $81,351 spent, $1,442,247 on hand.

Evans businessman Eugene Yu (R) — $37,107 raised, $138,414 spent, $288,358 self-loan, $235,896 on hand.

Augusta construction company owner Rick Allen (R) — $119,149 raised, $142,293 spent, $80,000 self-loan, $157,782 on hand.

Glennville State Rep. Delvis Dutton (R) — $114,579 raised, $10,230 spent, $104,351 on hand.

Businessman and former Congressional aide John Stone (R) — $29,211 raised, $15,587 spent, $55,219 on hand.

Macon nurse Diane Vann (R) — $11,037 raised, $10,912 spent, $125 on hand.

The late entries of Dutton and Yu, both of whom jumped in the first quarter, appear to have lit a fire under Allen after a desultory fourth quarter that got the sharks circling. Allen stepped up both his fundraising and his own contribution to the race. Over two cycles, he’s now put in $640,000 of his own money.

Yu, who moved down from the U.S. Senate race, is mostly self-backed, while Dutton showed early fundraising strength and was much more frugal than his foes — though he did not enter the race until February.

They’re all chasing Barrow, who is raising money ahead of his 2012 clip. He had $1,044,339 on hand at this point two years ago.


All that money to advertise what? The repuppies have no record of accomplishment to tout since all they have done is say 'no' to medical care and fair wages, advocate bombing brown people, and suppressing the vote of half the population. All they are left with is their standard message of "vote for me, I'm not half the a$$hole my opponent is," or "guvment can't solve problems, and I will be the best person to not solve problems."


At this point, only the relative figures for the highly contested GOP Senate seat matter.  The sitting Congressmen have large campaign chests and donor lists from past elections that will kick in next month.  Perdue has a personal fortune that he can use.  Karen Handel is dead in the water.

The GOP Senate nominee will start getting similar or more out of state donations, Party, and PAC support as mostly uncontested Nunn has started to receive.  This could be one of the most expensive races this year - depending on polling and political pundit predictions mid-summer.  If Nunn falls off like Texas' Wendy Davis has in her governorship race - both sides will back off on their contributions and spending.


How many ads are enough? Seriously, if money is speech, then this spending level is the babbling of idiots. Both sides of the political spectrum should be ashamed of their wasteful behavior.



You better copyrignt that quick or it will likely become a broun commercial.



And precisely what do you base the ludicrous 'if Nunn falls of like Wendy Davis' comment upon?



Politicians and their machinery know that elections these days are pretty much won or lost by their own name recognition and how much they can smear the other guy's name.  Both are primarily accomplished with television attack ads which of course with the repetition needed to drive the non-subliminal message home, requires the big bucks. 

This is why I never found Leno's "Jaywalking" or Man-On-The-Street bits funny. That same person who can't name who lives in the White House has a vote that counts every bit as much as my own. Too many of them have their opinion formed by the television advertising as with the repetition they can remember who the "bad guy" is even when they couldn't even point out who the incumbent may be if they weren't labeled as such on the ballot.

This is also a subject that the media can be considered biased on whether you consider them "librul" or "Faux". Too much revenue is pulled in by broadcast media in election years.