House Dems Built On Fundraising Advantage During GOP’s Month Of Turmoil, New Filings Show

The primary Republican House fundraising committee continues to lag behind its Democratic counterpart, according to newly released campaign filings.

The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) reported raising just over $5 million this October while the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) raised about $8.1 million. Democrats built on their lead over Republicans in October, raising $101.3 million so far this year compared to the NRCC’s $75.1 million.

“This is, on the surface, bad news for the Republicans,” Jeremey Mayer, a government professor at George Mason University, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “But I would caution that the ‘hard money’ game that the national House campaign committees represent for both parties, is less important today than it was 4 and 8 years ago.”

Mayer pointed out that super PACs could be major players in the 2024 elections and that “it’s tougher to know from month to month who is giving what and where.”

Both the NRCC and the DCCC are pulling in less money now than they were at this point in the lead-up to the 2020 election. The NRCC raised a little over $10 million in October 2019, while the DCCC brought in $12.2 million.

Fundraising declined by about half for Republicans and a quarter for Democrats. The raw lead for the DCCC over the NRCC in October fundraising was also about $1 million greater than in 2019.

The NRCC has $10 million less in cash on hand than the DCCC, per the most recent filings.

Some Republicans have reported anxiety about losing Rep. Kevin McCarthy as House speaker due to the potential fundraising ramifications.

“Losing McCarthy is obviously a setback for our fundraising; it’s like losing a hall of famer in that category,” Republican New York Rep. Nick LaLota said.

Democratic New York Rep. Dan Goldman doesn’t think newly elected House Speaker Mike Johnson will be able to match McCarthy’s fundraising acumen, saying that Johnson “has to build an entire donor network from scratch because he’s effectively unknown.”

Mayer thinks the speakership battle itself may have harmed Republicans’ ability to fundraise.

“Sure, the Republican numbers are probably affected by the House GOP having a series of circular firing squads at its leadership level over the last 11 months, along with a cast of characters who sometimes seem to have the collective maturity of cranky toddlers on an ill-fated field trip,” Mayer said.

“But still, I wouldn’t panic about these numbers if I were a Republican. I’d be concerned, but then take a look at what the Super PACs are doing or preparing to do for specific candidates in swing districts.”

It’s not all bad news for Republicans.

There is some evidence that Johnson could be useful for fundraising. The NRCC reported its best fundraising week of the election cycle after Johnson was elected to the speakership, with most of the donations coming from solicitations sent in Johnson’s name, according to Axios.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s requests for comment.

Robert Schmad on November 22, 2023

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