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Virginia House Republicans Getting Their Butts Kicked by House Dems in $$$, Opening Up Potential Opportunities for 2021

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With the mid-year 2020 Virginia campaign finance numbers now available, including for Virginia House of Delegates members, there’s a bunch of interesting stuff that jumps out. That includes how pathetically little “cash-on-hand” House Republicans have, and how many opportunities this potentially opens up for House Democrats heading into 2021, when every House of Delegates seat will be up for election, and when Democrats will be defending (and hoping to increase) their 55-45 majority. We can group the Republicans by how competitive their districts are and by how much (or, more to the point, how LITTLE) money they have at the midpoint of 2020.

First, if we look at some of the House Republicans who won by the narrowest margins in 2019, we get a pretty good start at a potential “red-to-blue” list for 2021…

1. Del. Amanda Batten: Won her 2019 race in HD96, against Democrat Mark Downey, by just 6.1 percentage points, 52.5%-46.4%. Had just $3,750 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $3,392 in the first half of 2020.
2. Del. Carrie Coyner: Won her 2019 race in HD62, against Democrat Lindsey Dougherty, by 10.4 points, 55.1%-44.7%. Had just $5,620 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $10,128 in the first half of 2020.
3. Del. Dave LaRock: Won his 2019 race in HD33, against Democrat Mavis Taintor, by 13.7 points, 56.8%-43.1%. Had just $7,045 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $13,973 in the first half of 2020.
4. Del. Roxann Robinson: Won her 2019 race in HD27, against Democrat Larry Barnett, by just 0.6 points, 50.2%-49.6%. Had just $14,291 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $4,275 in the first half of 2020.
5. Del. Kirk Cox: Won his 2019 race in HD66, against Democrat Sheila Bynum-Coleman, by just 4.7 points, 51.7%-47%. Had just $17,878 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $7,127 in the first half of 2020 (also note that this once-Speaker and once-huge fundraiser liquidated his “Colonial Leadership Trust” PAC to $0).
6. Del. Rob Bloxom: Won his 2019 race in HD100, against Democrat Phil Hernandez, by just 3.9 points, 51.9%-48.0%. Had just $27,653 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $925 in the first half of 2020.
7. Del. Tony Wilt: Won his 2019 race in HD26, against Democrat Brent Finnegan, by 8.1 points, 54%-45.9%. Had just $29,406 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $1,846 in the first half of 2020.
8. Del. Mark Cole: Won his 2019 race in HD88, against Democrat Jess Foster, by 11.6 points, 55.7%-44.1%. Had just $30,864 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $4,861 in the first half of 2020.
9. Del. Barry Knight: Won his 2019 race in HD81, against Democrat Len Myers, by just 4.4 points, 52.1%-47.7%. Had just $99,271 “cash-on-hand” as of 6/30, having raised just $2,250 in the first half of 2020.
10. Del. Glenn Davis: Won his 2019 race in HD84, against Democrat Karen Mallard, by just 2.5 points, 51.2%-48.7%. No numbers yet, but reported $38,775 “cash-on-hand” as of the end of 2019. Davis’ numbers are now in, and they’re pathetic…just$ 875 cash raised from January to June, along with $1,500 from in-kinds, and just $13,585 “cash-on-hand.” Also note that Davis is reportedly exploring a possible 2021 run for Lt. Governor. Hopefully, Karen Mallard’s still available and interested in running in 2021! 🙂

Other Republican House of Delegates members won by at least 14 percentage points in 2019, so are not vulnerable or in a “red-to-blue” category. Normally, that should mean that they’d be counted on to help out some of their more-vulnerable House Republicans colleagues. How’s that looking?

Let’s start with the following 11 Republican members who have “cash-on-hand” of less than $6,000, which means they barely have enough money to keep the lights on, let alone help out their colleagues

1. Chris Collins (HD29): Has literally ZERO “cash-on-hand.”
2. Emily Brewer (HD64): Has just $576 “cash-on-hand.”
3. Scott Wyatt (HD97): Has just $1,008 “cash-on-hand.”
4. Matt Fariss (HD59): Has just $1,324 “cash-on-hand.”
5. Chris Runion (HD25): Has just $2,510 “cash-on-hand.”
6. Les Adams (HD16): Has just $2,707 “cash-on-hand.”
7. Wendell Walker (HD23): Has just $3,552 “cash-on-hand.”
8. Nick Freitas (HD30): Running for VA07; has just $3,851 “cash-on-hand” in his delegate account and raised $0 for his delegate campaign in the first half of 2020.
9. Ronnie Campbell (HD6): Has just $3,971 “cash-on-hand.”
10. Buddy Fowler (HD55): Has just $4,847 “cash-on-hand.”
11. Jim Edmunds (HD60): Has just $5,905 “cash-on-hand.”

Pitiful.

Then there are these six House Republicans who have less than $20K “cash-on-hand,” meaning they can afford gas and food and not much else

12. Will Wampler (HD4): Has just $10,026 “cash-on-hand.”
13. Michael Webert (HD18): Has just $10,630 “cash-on-hand.”
14. Chris Head (HD7): Has just $11,256 “cash-on-hand.”
15. John McGuire (HD56): Has just $11,467 “cash-on-hand” (note: is running for VA07, which he’s likely to lose to Nick Freitas this Saturday).
16. Charles Poindexter (HD9): Has just $14,291 “cash-on-hand.”
17. Terry Kilgore (HD1): Has just $16,126 “cash-on-hand” – how the mighty (in this case, the former Commerce & Labor Committee chair) have fallen!

The following six House Republicans can be considered as “underperforming” – perhaps they can contribute a few thousand dollars to their House Republican colleagues, beyond paying their own expenses, but certainly aren’t in a position to help much.

18. Tommy Wright (HD61): Has just $21,460 “cash-on-hand.”
19. Jay Leftwich (HD78): Has just $21,542 “cash-on-hand.”
20. John Avoli (HD20): Has just $23,375 “cash-on-hand.”
21. Lee Ware (HD65): Has just $23,767 “cash-on-hand.”
22. Joe McNamara (HD8): Has just $23,791 “cash-on-hand.”
23. Keith Hodges (HD98): Has just $25,522 “cash-on-hand” (and raised $0 in the first half of 2020).

The following four House Republicans are in reasonable shape financially for their own campaigns and can contribute a little bit to their caucus mates.

24. Jeff Campbell (HD6): Has just $30,336 (raised $0 Jan-June ’20) “cash-on-hand.”
25. Terry Austin (HD19): Has just $33,451 “cash-on-hand.”
26. Jason Miyares (HD82): Has just $35,041 “cash-on-hand.”
27. Nick Rush (HD7): Has just $35,806 “cash-on-hand” (also has $8,672 in his “Point of Friction” – seriously, that’s the name, lol! – PAC).

The following six House Republicans are in good shape financially, with enough to campaign themselves and donate to other members – but certainly not huge amounts of money by any means.

28. Danny Marshall (HD14): Has $50,268 “cash-on-hand.”
29. Margaret Ransone (HD99): Has $53,908 “cash-on-hand.”
30. Todd Gilbert: Has $60,087 “cash-on-hand” (also has $30,092 in his “Republican Commonwealth Leadership” PAC) – this looks decent, until you realize that this guy is the House Minority *Leader*, and then you think…actually, this is pretty weak.
31. Will Morefield (HD3): Has $61,765 “cash-on-hand.”
32. Rob Bell (HD58): Has $68,578 “cash-on-hand.”
33. Kathy Byron (HD22): Has $71,985 “cash-on-hand” (also has $1,360 in her “2023” -named that for whatever reason – PAC).

Finally, these two House Republicans have over $100k “cash-on-hand,” which seems pretty good, until you consider that the following House Democrats all have >$100k: Eileen Filler-Corn ($256k), Jay Jones ($232k), Charniele Herring ($161k), Luke Torian ($139k), Jeion Ward ($134k), Joe Lindsey ($134k), Dawn Adams ($127k), Lamont Bagby ($121k).

34. Bobby Orrock (HD54): Has $119,706 “cash-on-hand”
35. Israel O’Quinn (HD5): Has $210,189 “cash-on-hand”

In sum, House Republicans are getting their butts kicked by House Democrats in terms of fundraising (see below for more information on this). Why is this the case? Clearly, a huge part of it is that Virginia Republicans are almost completely out of power at this point, having not won a statewide office since 2009, and in 2019 having lost control of both the State Senate and House of Delegates. The fact is, a *lot* of House Republicans’ money in previous years came to them, basically without even asking, from corporate interests who hoped for favorable treatment from the party in power – the Republicans for many years. Now, those House Republicans are out of power, with no clear prospect of getting it back, so why would corporate interests want to give them money? And, from what I hear, House Republicans aren’t very good at raising money, either via grassroots fundraising or by calling up corporate donors. Which basically leaves them high and dry.

While all this is bad news for House Republicans, obviously, on the flip side, it opens up a lot of opportunity for House Democrats to hold and even expand their House of Delegates majority in 2021 – a gubernatorial year, by the way, meaning that Democrats will likely show up to vote in large numbers. Which means that House Democrats should be looking right now to recruit strong candidates for 2021 in all the competitive districts, while of course locking down all their incumbents…