State Senate Fundraising 2013 Winners & Losers
Mario Scavello (R-Monroe)
Redistricting moved a new district into the Poconos and State Rep. Scavello is an easy favorite. He’s got an enormous bankroll to use against Democratic Northampton County Councilman Scott Parsons. He raised $189,708 last year and has $284,406.32 left on hand for 2014. He’s been preparing a bid for years. He cruised in 2012 and won re-election by 10 points (although he was not heavily targeted).
His impressive numbers show Dems are dead serious about flipping this seat; he raised more than all but 3 incumbent state senators.
Kane raised $306,375 and has $273,258.37 on hand.
Tim Solobay (D-Washington)
Solobay could face a concerted GOP challenge, although he would be a “reach” target, particularly after last year’s fundraising. To help him keep his seat for a second term, he raised $326,400 last year, spent about $97k and has $376,444 left for 2014.
He represents all of Greene County, most of Washington and some of Beaver after a million dollar, open seat battle in 2010 (he won by 6 points).Solobay has a Republican challenger, Camera Bartolotta. She is an actress, small business owner and former PTA vice president. In her campaign announcement, she highlighted the importance of what her campaign calls “local Western Pennsylvania values.”
Bartolotta raised $253 last year.
The Millionaires Club: Jay Costa (D-Allegheny), Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson), Dominic Pileggi (R-Delaware)
Three Senators passed the $1 million mark in cash on hand last year: Costa, Scarnati and Pileggi.
Costa is the Minority Leader in the Senate and many people who want to support the Senate Dems give to him to redistribute to his caucus how he sees fit. The same goes for the other two: Scarnati is Senate Pro Tempore, and Pileggi is the Majority Leader. As members of leadership, they disperse their funds to other members of their caucus.
Greg Lucas (R-Erie)
In the contested SD-50 primary, State Rep. Michele Brooks (R-Crawford) is the favorite of the GOP Senate leadership. To combat that advantage, State Rep. Greg Lucas is going to need serious resources. He raised $9,600 and has $2,200 on hand. His situation shouldn’t have come as a surprise. From the day he announced his candidacy to today, Lucas knew his House seat had been redistricted away and would remain in northwest Pa. for a mere 2 years. That means he knew that an easy, inexpensive re-election bid was out of the question.
Ron Miller (R-York)
In the special election to replace Sen. Waugh, Miller faces a self-funding millionaire in businessman Scott Wagner. While Miller certainly has the support of GOP leadership in Harrisburg, he will need their financial help, too. He raised just $26,000 in 2013 and has $26,000 on hand. Full disclosure: Wagner advertises on PoliticsPA.
Editor’s note: only even-numbered Senate districts are up for a vote in 2014; our list focused on candidates for those seats.
*Senator Aument was initially listed as a “Loser;” however, the wrong finance report was used and he has been removed from that category.