Senate fundraising numbers are out today, and while the fact is that neither Gov. Tim Kaine nor George Allen will be without adequate funds come November — given the intense national interest in their race — the early numbers clearly suggest that Gov. Kaine’s campaign is generating some real enthusiasm among Democrats, while Allen’s is showing itself to be a worn out effort touting a candidate without any new ideas and little to offer.
In the throes of a primary campaign, Allen’s fundraising was pretty anemic.
Gov. Kaine announced $2.2 million in fundraising for the first quarter and he has more than $4.4 million cash on hand,- a nice showing at this point in the race.
Even more significant, however, is the fact that 6,000 new grassroots donors made contributions of $200 or less, bringing the total number of low-dollar donors to more than 14,000 overall. This follows Kaine’s submission last week of more than 30,000 signatures in support of his candidacy. In a federal campaign, where there are contribution limits, such broad grassroots support is essential.
Meanwhile, Allen announced only $1.4 million raised, with $2.66 million cash on hand. He provided no other data.
(more on the flip)
Meanwhile, over at BearingDrift, “Allen Central” in the Virginia blogosphere, they are spinning furiously and incoherently, that the difference was all because of Kaine’s focus on “divisive” social issues, and that somehow this renders Gov. Kaine’s clear fundraising and grassroots superiority somehow invalid.
Blah blah blah. Whatever.
But back to the issue at hand. These numbers suggest some potential trouble for the Allen campaign, if only because his fundraising is obviously lagging, signifying that the GOP base in the Commonwealth is not happy with him, and that he will have to spend a fair amount to fend off Jamie Radtke and “Sideshow” Bob Marshall just to get to the nomination.
Allen’s support has never been very deep. In light of this report, it remains to be seen just how wide it is.
If nothing else, these numbers explain why Allen is unwilling to either forego or advocate for transparency of super-pac donations. Allen will be heavily relying on such donations from wealthy and secretive persons outside the Commonwealth pursuing their own agendas. I understand why Allen will rely on these funders – he really has no choice, given his lack of support in Virginia – but it carries risk as well, as Virginians may come to resent these outsiders, whose interests may conflict with those of many of our citizens, meddling in our affairs.