McConnell has substantial fundraising advantage in Senate race
January 31st, 2014
04:14 PM ET
9 years ago

McConnell has substantial fundraising advantage in Senate race

Washington (CNN) – Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s re-election team announced Friday that it added $2.2 million to its war chest, a sum that far outpaces the Kentucky Republican’s bipartisan challengers.

McConnell, who’s been fundraising for years with eyes on a sixth term in the Senate, has raised a total of $20 million for the race and ended 2013 with $10.9 million left in the bank.

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Jesse Benton, McConnell’s campaign manager, said the haul shows the “enthusiastic support” the senator is “gaining every day from people across America who appreciate his conservative leadership and willingness to fight on their behalf.”

Alison Lundergan Grimes, McConnell’s Democratic challenger and Kentucky’s secretary of state, also announced Friday that her campaign had raised $2.1 million at the end of 2013 and finished the year with $3.5 million left to spend.

Touting the haul as proof of “skyrocketing momentum,” Grimes announced she had raised a total of $5 million for the race.

“Grassroots supporters from all 120 Kentucky counties and all 50 states have invested in our campaign, underscoring the growing momentum behind Alison’s candidacy and the widely expressed rejection of Mitch McConnell’s failed, 30-year Washington record,” the campaign said in a release.

Although the numbers show McConnell has a substantial fundraising advantage and has far outspent Grimes, polls indicate the race could be close.

Grimes is not the only Senate hopeful challenging McConnell, however. Republican Matt Bevin announced Friday he brought it $900,000 in the final three months of 2013 and did not detail how much cash on hand the campaign had.

“We are encouraged that so many Kentuckians and conservatives across the country are engaging in this U.S. Senate race and are aware of what's at stake for our party and America,” said Bevin, a businessman who is backed by tea party grips like the Senate Conservatives Fund.

The race to unseat McConnell has drawn a substantial amount of attention from groups on both sides of the aisle. Democrats hope to seize on the opportunity to upend the Republican leader, while tea party Republicans would like to unseat McConnell as a symbol of their movement’s strength.

In response, McConnell has received some outside support from groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, who have dumped $200,000 in the contest.

To date, according to The Center for Responsive Politics, a total of $2.6 million of outside money has been spent in the race. One million of that has been spent against McConnell, while $1.1 has been spent against Grimes.

CNN’s Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2014 • Alison Lundergan Grimes • Congress • Fundraising • Kentucky • Mitch McConnell • Senate
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Where's Our $24 Billion?

    Although the numbers show McConnell has a substantial fundraising advantage and has far outspent Grimes, polls indicate the race could be close.
    He can outspend Ms. Grimes all he wants, but he's just wasting money. I'm sure the people of Kentucky are sick and tired of that turtle chin, pork spending McDonnell. His time is up!


    January 31, 2014 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    He'd should have a bigger fund raising capacity. He's got binders full of donors going back at least 30 years.

    January 31, 2014 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  3. Anonymous

    tom l
    I think Fair and Yolanda make some of the most relevant and cogent arguments on this board. They are honest, fact-based comments that don't only say repubs good dems bad. They actually put thought into their positions. I like them and applaud their comments.

    If your only goal is to hope people change their minds and vote in whatever direction you are subliminally suggesting, you should use different bait. A more mature approach would also be helpful.

    January 31, 2014 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    "In response, McConnell has received some outside support from groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, who have dumped $200,000 in the contest."

    Well duh, nobody loves sending American jobs over to China more than the CoC...and McConnell's delivered the goods on that score.

    January 31, 2014 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  5. carlos

    It's time for an "alternate" Senator from Kentucky

    January 31, 2014 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  6. Thomas

    We need smart Southern women , not out of touch good old boys .

    January 31, 2014 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  7. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Let's see if the good people of Kentucky are stupid enough to elect this canine dropping yet again...

    January 31, 2014 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  8. Thomas

    Need proof outside money is going to matter in this year's elections? Just look at spending this week. Republicans are sending almost $2 million into a Florida special election for the U.S. House, and Democrats are standing by with almost the same amount.

    Citizens United , America , the best country money can buy .

    January 31, 2014 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  9. Bill

    Who cares. He is toast and will not win the election.

    January 31, 2014 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  10. Hooper

    The fact he was sent to Washington, to begin with speaks volume's about the area he came from. Pickens must have been mighty slime thereabouts.

    January 31, 2014 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  11. Jonathon Powelly

    Money is not always the determinate factor especially where the Tea Party is concerned.

    February 1, 2014 12:33 am at 12:33 am |
  12. don in albuquerque

    It's always about the money, never about who will serve the people with intelligence or honesty. Remember the comment of making certain the president was a one term president was his job. That served the nation well didn't it.

    February 1, 2014 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  13. Pete

    Remember people who's in McConnells corner ,Elaine Chao his wife and guess with Citizens United his secret contributors might be..China,Taiwan her native country sound familar..Just look what she did out sourcing jobs,businesses in the Bushs terms to these same countrys and you as well as I know she's welcomed there with open arms giving these crooks tax breaks for outsourcing as well but he'll go down in defeat because his routine of being an instagator of political defiance ,mayhem isn't welcomed anymore..

    February 1, 2014 11:23 am at 11:23 am |