If you’re wondering why the fundraising pitches from political candidates have ramped up dramatically in recent days, it’s because of tomorrow’s critical fundraising deadline. Q3 numbers before an election are an important barometer of real-world competitiveness, and have a way of cutting through campaign bluster and revealing where the races that matter are (and aren’t).
As Roll Call’s Kate Ackley reports, it’s also a time when the fundraising gimmicks can get particularly gimmicky:
It must be near the end of a pivotal fundraising quarter, because Ohio Democratic Senate candidate Rep. Tim Ryan is “freaking out.” Colorado’s GOP Senate nominee, Joe O’Dea, is offering to “personally 1,400% MATCH” select campaign donations. [Pols emphasis]
Lawmakers and challengers are planning a fundraising blitz ahead of Friday’s quarterly deadline, the last big one before the November midterms, which are on track to be the priciest nonpresidential cycle yet. The onslaught of appeals includes desperate-sounding emails like the ones from Ryan and O’Dea, as well as more than 100 in-person events planned this week in Washington for members of both parties to raise campaign cash from K Street lobbyists and political action committee donors while Congress is in session.
Colorado GOP Senate candidate Joe O’Dea, as readers know, self-funded his primary campaign. O’Dea’s ability to self-fund in a state that may not in the end be competitive for Republicans was originally seen as an asset, but that presumption has proven crippling to O’Dea by de-prioritizing the race for national GOP funding–and there’s little sign that O’Dea is actually spending to counterbalance the deficiency. With all of that in mind, O’Dea offering a ridiculous “personal match” turning every contributed dollar into 14 could be interpreted as a test by O’Dea to determine how much he should himself keep spending on a race every poll shows him losing.
That would at least be a practical reason to broadcast desperation so loudly.