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Q1 Fundraising: Winners, and Losers

The numbers are in. Here’s what every congressional candidate in PA raised between January 1 and April 4, 2012, plus our list who exceeded expectations and who fell behind.

Note: For candidates facing a primary, the cash on hand figures below are likely already out of date. They represent account balances before the big media spending began.


Tim Murphy, PA-18. If he clears his primary challenge (likely), the ordeal may have ended up actually boosting his prospects to retain his seat in the long term. Rep. Murphy (R-Allegheny) raised a massive $661K, the most of any candidate in PA this quarter, and his COH of $1.4 million is second only to Schwartz.

Matt Cartwright, PA-17. It takes a lot to be able to beat a 20 year incumbent, as this Democratic attorney from Lackawanna County hopes to do to Rep. Tim Holden. Cartwright will have the resources to do it. He raised $325K, plus $300K he loaned his own campaign. Holden had an impressive quarter, too, with $437K. But his low pre-existing COH means this will be a race to the finish.

Kathy Boockvar, PA-8. She’s the DCCC’s top recruit in PA, and this quarter she proved why. The attorney and Bucks County Dem pulled in $330K. Although she somehow spent 80K as well (hopefully, for her sake, on further fundraising efforts). She’ll need to keep and even increase the pace next quarter, but she’s off to a strong start.

Mike Fitzpatrick, PA-8. He’s done this dance before, and knows what it takes to win a highly competitive district. The Bucks County Republican raised $360K in Q1, and has almost a million dollars ($927K) on hand.

Keith Rothfus, PA-12. While Jason Altmire and Mark Critz spend hundreds of thousands smacking each other, Rothfus, the Allegheny County attorney, is quietly doing what he needs to do to have a strong shot at the winner. He raised over $241K in Q1, and now has $384K on hand. He’s easily on track to have more COH than the Dems’ primary winner.

Chris Reilly, PA-4. The race to replace Rep. Todd Platts (R-York) is a seven-man GOP primary, where two weeks ago no candidate had greater than 25 percent name ID. York Co. Commissioner Reilly significantly out-raised his opponents, bringing in $192K and entering the final stretch of the campaign with $107K on hand. His closest competitor, state Rep. Scott Perry, raised $108K and had $84K on hand.

Allyson Schwartz, PA-13. No such list would be complete without the Democrat from Montco. She pulled in $466K in Q1, bringing her COH north of $2.6 mil. It’s no wonder that she’s one of the DCCC’s top dogs.

Charlie Dent, PA-15. The Lehigh County Republican got a safer seat thanks to redistricting, but he isn’t taking any chances. He hustled and raised $360K this quarter, three times both of his prospective Democratic opponents combined. He has $517K on hand.

George Badey, PA-7, Manan Trivedi, PA-6 & Larry Maggi, PA-18. We’re putting these three Dems, challenging Reps. Pat Meehan (R-Delaware), Jim Gerlach (R-Chester) and Tim Murphy (R-Allegheny), on the bubble. They each had a respectable first quarter (Badey has $188K COH; Trivedi has $355K; Maggi has $266K), enough to put them on the radar of the DCCC and national interest groups. Time will tell if they can build on this pace – they’ll need to. Meehan has $1.1 million on hand; Gerlach has $688K; Murphy has $1.4 million.


Evan Feinberg, PA-18. His $71K in Q1 is better than his $50K last year, but it won’t be enough to topple Rep. Tim Murphy. It’s not just the head-to-head (Feinberg’s $80K COH vs. Murphy’s $1.4 million), it’s dissuasive effect on outside groups considering jumping in. As Club for Growth prez Chris Chocola said when the group said it had no further plans to run ads in PA-18, “We don’t mind being one of the larger financial supporters of a candidate but we don’t want to be their finance committee.

Rick Daugherty, PA-15. Before we even talk about Charlie Dent, Daugherty, the Lehigh Co. Dems Chair, will need to defeat Jackson Eaton in the primary. That will be tough with just $4K on hand, compared to $161K for Eaton. Daugherty raised about $8K in Q1; Eaton brought in $104K.

Phil Scollo, PA-10. The Pike County management consultant seeking to challenge Rep. Tom Marino (R-Lycoming) brought in just 16K, a long way from what he’ll need in this Republican district. His saving grace is that Marino’s Q1 ($124K) and COH ($290K) aren’t out of this world.

Bill Vinsko, PA-11. The Luzerne County attorney started strong in Q3 2011, nearly matching Rep. Lou Barletta. Then the new map came out, showing he no longer lived in the district. In Q1 2012, with a primary to win, Vinsko brought in just $28K. Barletta’s numbers aren’t great for a freshman in a newly drawn district ($239K on hand), but neither are Vinsko’s ($31K on hand). Numbers are not yet available for his Democratic primary opponent, Gene Stilp.

Here’s the full list:

Correction: An earlier version of this story included Rep. Joe Pitts (R-Lancaster) in the loser column, saying that he raised just $10K. Actually, he raised $123K, plus about $50K since the report was due. A reader dutifully notes that the FEC had allowed Pa. candidates to combine their Q1 reports with the pre-primary reports, due to the proximity of the due dates. Most campaigns filed one joint report, we failed to notice that Pitts filed separate ones. His Democratic opponent Aryanna Strader brought in $50K and has $32K on hand.

One Response

  1. Smith is in it for all the right reasons: not a career politician OR an attorney, wants to reduce debt level in this country and ease the tax burden. His huge supportive family is ready to join him in making the sacrifice of having him go back to work.

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