CD-2 Money Totals Offer Tactical Hints

Candidates have raised nearly $2 million cumulatively with a year still to go until the general election.The third quarter money totals in the race for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. House seat in Colorado’s second congressional district are straightforward:

Joan Fitz-Gerald raised $387,598.02.
Jared Polis pulled in $370,031.70.
And Will Shafroth, $208,259.00

Since the starting gun sounded in the spring — with more than a year to go before the 2008 general election — the three candidates have raised a total of $1,959,390.58.

All three candidates have national money machines generating cash for them. For the July to October, 2007, period, Fitz-Gerald received a total of $48,069 gathered up by Emily’s List, a group that supports women candidates for political office. Shafroth and Polis both raised money through ActBlue, an online fundraising outfit. Polis, whose netroots go deep, got $86,630.46 from this source. Shafroth got $8,090 via ActBlue.

Fitz-Gerald raised $49,500 from political action committees, representing an eclectic group of supporters from labor unions (teamsters, airline pilots) to businesses (bankers, energy companies). Polis got $6,250 in PAC donations from political campaign PACs — Citizens for Joe Kennedy, Francine Busby for Congress and Send Salazar to Congress. Polis personally gave the campaign $19,612.24, bringing his self-financed total to $174,595.37 since he declared his candidacy. Shafroth did not list any PAC contributions.

Nearly all the money raised by the candidates came from outside the district. In fact Jared Polis had nearly twice as much money donated from California alone ($113,750) as he did from donors from donors within the 2nd congressional ($64,550).

The donations from within the district tell an interesting story though. Fitz-Gerald raised $59,147 from within the 2nd district, or about 15 percent of her total. Polis’s $64,550 represents about 17 percent of his total. Will Shafroth made a very strong showing among local donors, raising almost as much as the other two — $52,150 — but it represented just over 25 percent of his total fundraising.

Within the district, there were noticeable strongholds. Polis got donations from Boulder, but scarcely anywhere else. Fitz-Gerald raised money from the mountain portion of the district and the eastern segments in Adams, Jefferson and Broomfield counties, but relatively little in Boulder. And Shafroth got funds from Boulder and the mountains, but almost none from the eastern portions of CD-2.

Though none of the candidates has released any polling data, these funding strengths and weaknesses likely reflect the voters’ relative knowledge of the three, and indicate where they’ll each need to concentrate their activities in the coming months.

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Dan Whipple

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