PA-Gov: Wolf Finishing Strong In Fundraising

wolf adDemocratic front-runner Tom Wolf isn’t letting his foot off the gas as Election Day nears. (There is a terrible Jeep-related pun somewhere in here).

In the second Friday pre-primary financial report released by the Wolf campaign, they raised $638,092 from April 1st to May 5th. Even more importantly, they spent a mammoth $6,088,214 over that time period and still have $1,608,234 cash on hand.


Among Wolf’s haul was about $36,000 in PAC money, which is somewhat smaller than expected considering the overall amount. Nevertheless, among the PACs to support him were the Eckert Seamans PA PAC, which gave $10,000. Additionally, Johnstown Regional PAC contributed $5,000 while Clark Hill Thorp Reed PAC added $2,500.

Perhaps more intriguingly, Wolf received support from the campaign coffers of several elected officials. Allegheny County Chief Executive Rich Fitzgerald was the most generous with $10,000 yet Wolf also received support from State Reps. Eddie Day Pashinski ($2,000) and Frank Burns ($1,000), as well as State Sen. Judy Schwank ($500) and Erie County Councilman Kyle Foust ($300).


The most eye-popping numbers, though, were the amounts of money the Wolf campaign dished out to keep their noteworthy media effort going through May 20th. A substantial $5,155,334 went to Shorr Johnson Magnus on media buys and production to create and continually broadcast those now famous Wolf campaign ads.

They also used $122,528 on online advertising and services from Groundswell Public Strategies. The front-runner is staying on top of polling as well as, shelling out $103,600 to Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research. The rest of Wolf’s spending mostly goes to traditional sources like salaries, payroll taxes, and office supplies.

Overall, Wolf is currently in fine financial shape as the countdown to the primary winds down.


16 Responses

  1. You don’t believe the brilliant mind behind a home building supply company knew that they were not building homes in 05-06 like they had been previously? That he was oblivious to the market in the space his company occupies?

    I’m not whining and I am stating facts. He sources from a right to work state. Those aren’t wolf employees enjoying the benefits of working for him by the way. The company pensions are woefully underfunded. Etc etc

    I don’t understand the thought behind not challenging someone because they got a lead in a poll. If you don’t have the stomach for a primary where you coasted on big and early ad buys, you certainly aren’t ready for the Republicans.

  2. @JB The debt only became unmanageable in the recession. If the recession didn’t hit the debt would’ve easily been discharged. Him selling his company is not a sin. All the family members have said none of them wanted to take over but of course you know better than that. You know all about Wolf’s reasons for selling the company and just assume he must be lying. Which is my point you are searching for reasons to attack Wolf and calling anyone who doesn’t agree with you an idiot or rude. You aren’t presenting “facts” you are presenting your suspicions about claiming to know what Wolf was thinking.

    I don’t like McCord because he is giving Republican’s ammunition. Before that I had nothing against the guy. You started attacking Wolf on this website the second he pulled ahead. Unless you think he’s not putting up negative ads while 20 points behind then my issue with him absolutely has merit.

  3. Each time JB writes something, it reads “WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAH!” Louder and more constant crying than my kids when they were babies.

    Just ignore JB. Next Wednesday, he will go from being a person crying about the shame of his candidate losing by a lot (despite being a 2-time statewide elected official with the support of most county Democratic committees and most labor unions) to a sore loser because his candidate lost by 20%.

    In the meantime, “WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAAH, WAAAAAAAAAAAH!” Maybe you can cry yourself to sleep and allow you to think this was all a bad dream for you, JB.

  4. Wait just because he has given an answer it’s gospel? He took out $20mil, saddled the company with unmanageable debt, they shed the lumber business and those 400 jobs, he rides in with $11mil (where’d the $9mil go?) and a plan to use cheap right to work state labor, and he is a hero? Is that legal? Yes! A lot of things are legal and aren’t right. Look at what Wall Street got away with because it was technically legal. Meanwhile pensions are at 38% funded and his profit sharing is two years out of the entire history of the company. Misleading? Absolutely!

    The debt caused the collapse. The housing market was slowing when he decided to sell and saddle the company with $50mil in debt. Was the company healthy at that time? Absolutely! The market for home building was absolutely turning and those in the industry knew it. The 2008 financial collapse was unforeseen but the housing bubble was not.

    His response to why he was selling at that time was no one else in the family was interested. I choose to not accept that due to the timing of these things. Read the inquirer article about the deal not articles on political ads.

    My other questions remain unanswered.

    You and your friends resort to name calling and personal attacks with no merit in your assault on McCord. I am presenting facts. Wolf has a great Republican story. He made the right moves for himself. I will never deny that.

  5. @xenothaulus — @BGDem is correct, yard signs are a complete waste of money. They are only to make local people who think they are important but really are not feel happy, and for those who think yard signs are important. I don’t know what type of TV shows you watch, but Wolf has spent far more money on network and cable TV in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre than McCord (it isn’t a matter of getting a deal or not, you buy TV time based on GRPs costing the same in the same media market). Pay attention, Wolf will beat McCord in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre media market.

  6. @JB That ad deals with all of the attacks you are pushing. That he loaded his company up on debt right before the recession and then ran away. Like I said before the reality is he sold a healthy company using a perfectly normal business practice (Literally thousands of companies do it every year) where the company took on a manageable amount of debt. The recession then came and crushed the company making those payments too much for the company to bear. This caused the cost of the debt to increase by almost 3x the initial amount. Wolf then cancelled his planned campaign for Governor and came back to run the company. He put his own millions in.

    People are allowed to sell their own companies and not be monsters if things go wrong afterwards. And he had zero incentive to rejoin the company but helping out the workers and the company he helped build. You complain on and on about how everyone here just picks on McCord yet you are the one who won’t stop attacking Wolf with attacks that have been disproved over and over again by numerous outside sources. Half the state condemned the race attack ad and the every single fact checking website online has rated these ads as inaccurate. Here’s another one for you.
    And another:

    Wolf has answered the questions you bring up over and over again. You just don’t like the answers and instead just keep parroting back the same stuff and pretending no one has engaged on the issue. There are responses to the business history, the pension attacks, the tax attacks, and yes the race attack.

    I know it must be upsetting that McCord is losing but that doesn’t automatically make the guy beating him some kind of monster. You clearly value McCord’s union support more than anything else and that is fine, admirable even but many others here believe in other reasons to support Tom. That doesn’t make us sheep or idiots too dumb to do research ourselves. Can’t you just cheer for your own candidate without having to tear down everyone else?

  7. Yard signs are pointless and mean nothing when it comes to who is the front funner or who will win the race. They are a waste of money and if Wolf doesn’t have many out it’s cause he’s smart and knows better than to waste his money on stupid pointless signs…

  8. NEPA here. I *still* have not seen a single Wolf ad or sign in someone’s yard. Where is all this money going? To the Philly and Pittsburgh metros? Everything in W-B area is McCord McCord McCord, though I have started seeing a few Schwartz signs, and the other day I saw an for her on tv.

    I have brought this up before, but I am constantly bemused that Wolf is the presumptive nominee when I would not have even heard of him if it wasn’t for being online.

  9. Tarrou – you posted an article refuting an Allyson Schwartz ad.

    I don’t know what that has to do with answering the questions I’ve posed here.

  10. Your version is much more plausible. He was so excited about the surprise Rendell sprung on him that they never discussed, not only did he take money out in a leveraged buyout but convinced his two cousins to too. Just so they could watch him at his new job.

    Even after they took all that cash out they still owned a third of the company. I’m not buying they just closed their eyes until employees started calling either saying the debt is sinking us.

    Seriously he sold a stake in his company to be revenue secretary? It wasn’t really a sale either. The company took on massive debt to pay them and the fund made an obviously risky investment.

  11. JB-

    You mean when he found out Rendell was going to appoint him Revenue Secretary and he sold off his business to be ready for his new job?

    Gee. You are really grasping at straws.

  12. David – he was in the home building supply business. He had something like 20 lumber yards. When they stop building homes like they did in 05-06 you tend to notice that.

    I find it hard to believe that a technocrat and MIT grad like Tom Wolf had no idea what was going on in his business and industry. Let’s not forget the debt from the leveraged buyout was what put them in such poor financial shape going into the recession.

    You are confusing the housing bubble with the financial collapse of 08. Many people knew this was coming and the signs were there in 05-06 for someone so close to the home building industry.

    Either he knew or was not paying any attention. I don’t like either answer.

  13. JB-

    “Why were there only 2 years of profit sharing?”

    I’m guessing because it took a few years for him to repair the company and make it profitable again.

    Or it may the profit sharing was one of Wolf’s improvements, and wasn’t there previously.

    Are you claiming that Wolf knew about the market collapse, despite it coming as a complete surprise to most of the pundits, news media, and investment banks? Wow. He must be really smart or have super-psychic powers. (or it’s just a coincidence)

  14. Once again I’ll ask the Wolf cheerleaders here:

    Why were there only 2 years of profit sharing?

    Why is Wolf’s pension an abysmal 38% funded making the state system look phenomenal by comparison?

    Why did he decide to “take out a little cash” just as the housing market was abruptly slowing forcing $50mil in debt on the company while lining his pockets?

    Why out of dozens of investment funds interviewed did he end up with a fund whose largest member was SERS?

    Why did Wolf shed 400 jobs (the vast majority of his employees) when it might have been avoided had he not saddled them with massive debt that could not be serviced? Was his decision responsible to those he employed?

    Why is the reinvention of the business model trumpeted in his ads “sourcing” cheap right to work state labor from a company with numerous labor violations and stamping the family name on them?

    Please explain this democratic story to me.

    If people knew the truth they would not want PA run like Tom Wolf’s business.

Comments are closed.

  • Who Will Be Speaker of the PA House on February 28?

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