FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 11th, 2020
AZ Cash Race: Spaceships beat Fighter Jets
Mark Kelly continues to outraise Martha McSally in crucial Senate Race
PHOENIX (February 11th, 2020) – The calendar just turned 2020 but already record sums of money are being raised in Arizona this cycle. A perennial red state that has produced such conservative icons as John McCain and Barry Goldwater is getting huge attention from deep-pocketed donors with no signs of slowing down.
“Arizona’s history of inexpensive and predictable U.S. Senate elections seems to be over given the amount of money pouring in from across the country the last two years,” said Mike Noble, chief of research and managing partner. “The race between Republican Sen. Martha McSally and Democratic challenger Mark Kelly could attract upwards of $200 million, including outside spending.”
In the race to fill the final two years of John McCain’s six-year term, FEC data shows former astronaut Kelly and fighter-pilot turned-Senator Martha McSally together pulled in more than $30 million over the course of 2019. To put this in perspective, now-Sens. McSally and Sinema raised a combined $38 million over the course of the entire 2018 race for Jeff Flake’s old Senate seat. At this point in the 2018 cycle, Sinema — a prolific fundraiser herself — had just over $5 million cash on hand and McSally had yet to declare her candidacy. Now, Mark Kelly has more than $13 million on hand and McSally is closing in on $8 million.
These astronomical sums are enough to propel Kelly and McSally into the top 10 Senate candidates for this cycle. Kelly is #1 on that list — putting him above well-known senators such as Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham. McSally is ranked 6th, raising more than other endangered incumbents Susan Collins and Cory Gardner.
Regarding the races for Arizona’s 9 congressional districts also on the ballot in November, most of the incumbents are continuing to outraise their challengers at this point in the cycle — with only two exceptions. In Az-06, Rep. David Schweikert has less than one-third the money of his Democratic challenger Hiral Tipirneni ($278k vs. $912k), a physician who ran a competitive race in the 2018 special election that now-Rep. Debbie Lesko captured in the ruby red 8th district. The other incumbent currently being outraised is Rep. Paul Gosar whose independent, self-funded challenger Emily Robinson has $240k in cash on hand, compared to his $222k.
“These two Republicans may be relying on the voter registration advantage or long-time incumbency, but each needs to step up their fundraising in what could be a Democratic wave year,” Noble said.
Methodology: Data compiled from the Federal Elections Commission
Media Contacts: Mike Noble, OH Predictive Insights, firstname.lastname@example.org, (480) 313-1837
Haylye Plaster, OH Predictive Insights, email@example.com, (602) 687-3034
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