“ ‘Fundraging’ very neatly summarizes low-dollar donor behavior, the collision of emotion and giving,” said Patrick Ruffini, a Republican pollster and digital strategist.
Across the 14 most-competitive Senate races, Democrats collectively raised nearly $200 million more than their Republican counterparts in the three-month period that ended Sept. 30, according to Federal Election Commission reports filed Thursday. Leading the pack was Mr. Harrison, who collected $58 million for the quarter, beating the previous quarterly Senate fundraising record by about $20 million. Mr. Graham, who has been vocal about his challenger’s formidable cash hauls, raised $28 million, the most ever for a Republican Senate candidate. Neither campaign responded to requests for comment.
Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock raised more than twice as much money for his Senate campaign as incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Steve Daines did in the latest reporting period, according to numbers released by their campaigns on Thursday.
Bullock reported raising $26.8 million in the three months between July 1 and Sept. 30, while Daines reported raising $11.5 million.
Bullock’s fundraising total now stands at nearly $38 million since he filed as a candidate in March while Daines’ total is $24.5 million since he began his first term in 2014, Lee Newspapers of Montana reports.
Bullock’s quarterly contributions exceed the nearly $26.6 million in total fundraising for Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Tester and his Republican challenger Matt Rosendale in their 2018 race, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Tester raised $20.9 million.
Total spending in the 2018 U.S. Senate race in Montana was about $60 million. Spending by campaigns and outside groups in this year’s contest is expected to reach at least $146 million as the parties battle for control of the Senate.