PA7: Scheller, with 500K Loan, Leads Wild in Cash on Hand
It took a large self-loan, but challenger Lisa Scheller leads incumbent Rep. Susan Wild (D-Lehigh) in the cash on hand race after Q1. It augurs another expensive congressional campaign in the Lehigh Valley.
Wild’s campaign raised just over $530,000 in the first three months of 2021, while spending $95,000 during that time period. The Lehigh County Democrat entered April with just under $515,000 cash on hand.
Lisa Scheller, a former Lehigh County Commissioner and businesswoman who lost Wild by just under 4 points in 2020 for Pennsylvania’s 7th Congressional District, has filed paperwork to run for Congress in 2022 and submitted her first finance report for the year.
Scheller’s campaign raised just under $650,000 from the beginning of 2021 to the end of March, while spending slightly under $55,000 during that time period. While the nearly $650,000 is the largest of any congressional candidate in the state for the 1st quarter, $500,000 of it was from a loan that Scheller gave to her campaign. She entered April with just under $675,000 cash on hand.
According to the post-general election 2020 FEC filing, Wild raised $4.65 million during the previous election cycle. Scheller raised $3.73 million during the previous election cycle, with $2.45 million of it being from loans she gave to her campaign.
Wild’s 2021 first quarter haul is significantly higher than the amount she raised at the same point in the previous election cycle.
In her April 2019 filing, Wild raised just over $225,000, while bringing just over $190,000 cash on hand into the 2nd quarter.
Wild and Joe Biden carried the 7th Congressional District by similar margins. Wild won by just under 4 points, while Biden bested Donald Trump by just under 5 points, according to Daily Kos.
Wild is one of three Democrats in the state targeted by the NRCC to flip in 2022, along with Reps. Matt Cartwright (D-Lackawanna) and Conor Lamb (D-Allegheny).
However, Pennsylvania is slated to lose a seat after redistricting, making it difficult for any challenger and incumbent to accurately size up their 2022 prospects.