Bachmann bests the rest in fundraising

  • Article by: ERIC ROPER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 16, 2010 - 10:42 PM

Since April, the Sixth District incumbent raised more than any other House candidate in nation.

U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann's reelection bid in the Sixth District has already smashed a litany of Minnesota fundraising records, but it doesn't end there.

Election filings released Friday show Bachmann has raised more since April than any other U.S. House candidate in the country.

The filings also reveal that Bachmann's DFL challenger, Tarryl Clark, raised more than all but one Democratic House candidate in the same period.

The findings -- published in a Washington Post analysis of all available election filings Friday -- put the race just north of the Twin Cities on track to be one of the most expensive in the country this fall.

Bachmann appears to hold the upper hand with voters in the conservative district, however. Recent polling shows that the Stillwater Republican has a 9-point lead over Clark, a state senator from St. Cloud. The margin of sampling error on the poll was plus or minus 4.2 percentage points.

Bachmann announced last week that she has raised $1.7 million since April, pushing her total fundraising to more than $4 million. That's more than any U.S. House candidate has ever raised in a Minnesota election.

Since April, Clark has raised just under $1 million, making her the first nonincumbent House candidate in state history to pass the $2 million mark in total revenue at this point in the race.

A Star Tribune analysis of the campaign filings shows that 59 percent of Bachmann's major donations in the last three months came from outside Minnesota -- down from 63 percent in April. By contrast, nearly 70 percent of Clark's major donations came from within Minnesota.

Where's the money going?

The filings released on Friday also tell how the candidates have spent what they got.

Bachmann began July with a hefty $2.3 million in the bank, compared to Clark's $850,000. The two candidates have already spent a combined $3 million.

Clark's campaign doled out nearly $200,000 on television advertising, about $100,000 for telemarketing, and another $43,000 for Web development and consulting.

In the same period, Bachmann spent about $380,000 on telemarketing, more than $80,000 on fundraising consulting and nearly $80,000 on media consulting. She has yet to air any televised campaign ads.

Telemarketing is commonly used by campaigns to solicit donations.

First District

Yards behind Clark, Republican state Rep. Randy Demmer posted the second-highest figures for a congressional challenger this quarter in his race to unseat Democratic Rep. Tim Walz in southern Minnesota's First Congressional District. Demmer pulled in about $300,000, leaving him with about $250,000 in the bank, compared with Walz's $850,000. Walz raised $382,000 in the last quarter.

Staff writer Glenn Howatt contributed to this report. Eric Roper • 612-673-1732

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