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Republicans' Fundraising Peril

Lost amid the focus on presidential fundraising in the final week of the second quarter was the release of financial figures for the first five months of the year by the four congressional committees.

The numbers are -- frankly -- stunning.

Through May, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and the Democratic Congressional Committee had raised $48.6 million as compared to the $36 million collected by the National Republican Senatorial Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee. And, even though the two Republican committees have been outraised by $12 million by their Democratic counterparts, they have actually outspent the DSCC and DCCC $31.3 million to $23.7 million.

Those raising and spending figures leave a -- you guessed it! -- massive cash on hand gap between the two sides. The DSCC and DCCC have $25.5 million on hand while the NRSC and NRCC have just $6.1 million in the bank. Compare that to the two sides' relative cash positions at the end of May 2005; the two Republican committees had $19.1 million in the bank -- $6.5 million more than the two Democratic campaign committees.

Three of the four committees still carry significant debt from the 2006 cycle. The NRCC and NRSC have a combined $6.8 million in debt (all from the NRCC) while the DCCC and DSCC carry $8.7 million in debt.

The gross disparity between the two sides is often lost in broader stories that look at the financial playing field. Why? Because the Republican National Committee and Democratic National Committee figures are added into the total. Through May 2007, the RNC had collected $39.8 million as compared to $24.6 million collected by the DNC. The RNC ended May with $15 million in the bank as compared to $5.5 million for the DNC.

And, in the 2006 cycle, the RNC played a huge role in the congressional elections -- transferring tens of millions of dollars to the House and Senate committees to bolster their efforts. In the case of the NRSC, the RNC actually jumped in to help fund a series of independent expenditure ads in places like Tennessee, Ohio and Missouri.

But, in a presidential cycle, things will change drastically. The RNC will focus the vast majority of its efforts and money on supporting its eventual presidential nominee; if there anything leftover the committee will turn its attention to Senate and House races.

In certain states hosting Senate races that are also likely to be presidential battlegrounds -- New Hampshire, Colorado, Minnesota -- the Republican candidate should get some boost from the voter ID and turnout operations being funded through the RNC and the presidential campaign. But the level of financial commitment from the RNC toward the two campaign committees is likely to dramatically drop off in the 2008 cycle.

What's the practical impact of the emerging fundraising chasm between the two parties? Put simply, it complicates any effort by Republicans to play offense in states and seats held by Democrats.

Take the Senate playing field. Republicans now have 22 incumbents to defend (soon to be Wyoming Sen. John Barrasso will be on the ballot next November). While less than a third of those members seem likely to face serious challenges in 2008, the NRSC must spend whatever it takes to hold them. After that, will they have the money to go on offense anywhere? Luckily, several of their targets are in states like South Dakota and Montana where advertising is quite cheap. Even so, there is likely to be a major cash pinch when it comes to funding challenger races.

Remember that all four of the congressional committees are first and foremost about incumbent retention. In order to get members to raise and donate money to the committees, the organizations must show a commitment to defending incumbents no matter the cost. Witness the millions the DCCC poured into four lost cause races in Texas in 2004 -- simply because the races all featured incumbents and it was impossible for the party to walk away from them even though the races were probably unwinnable no matter how much money is spent.

So, while Republicans' financial positioning seems likely to limit their ability to do much beyond protecting their incumbents, Democrats seem on pace to expand the playing field thanks to their financial edge. Could Senate races in places like Tennessee, North Carolina or Kentucky become competitive if the DSCC is outspending the NRSC two to one on television? No question. And could people like Reps. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) and Mike Ferguson (R-N.J.) -- both of whom sit in costly media markets -- face significantly more peril if the DCCC is vastly outraising and outspending the NRCC? Absolutely.

These fundraising patterns are not set in stone and have the capacity to change. Republicans' June numbers will get a nice bump from the President's Dinner held earlier this month and most of their incumbents are well-heeled and are likely to carry significant financial edges over their Democratic opponents.

But, the trend line looks far from promising for the Republican campaign committees. If the next seven months of the year look anything like the first five they will be in deep, deep trouble.

By Chris Cillizza  |  June 25, 2007; 1:10 PM ET
Categories:  Odds and Ends  
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Next: Obama's On the Air in Iowa



Posted by: Bill | June 30, 2007 3:54 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Ruben Pacheco | June 27, 2007 4:21 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Ruben Pacheco | June 27, 2007 4:21 PM | Report abuse

"Moore: We live in a time where we have a man sending us to war for fictitious reasons. Whether it's the fictition of duct tape or the fictitious of orange alerts we are against this war, Mr. Bush. Shame on you, Mr. Bush, shame on you. And any time you've got the Pope and the Dixie Chicks against you, your time is up."

Posted by: mike moore | June 26, 2007 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Mike Moore is now mainstream america. The right are now the "crazies". The right are now the one's WHO HAVE PROVEN they don't know what they are talking about. Unlike Mike Moore who turned the tide against fascism with his 9/11 movie. He is a great American. We all owe Mike Moore a huge debt of graditude. Where would we be without him? At least he got the "mainstream" thinking about "what is". As opposed to the right who advoted ignorance and hate intolerance. Fox "News" has been wrong about an awful lot of stories over the last ten years. Diliberate? If so, Propoganda

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 26, 2007 1:13 PM | Report abuse

This Administration and its blind supporters make Michael Moore look like he knows what he's talking about!

Posted by: Anonymous | June 26, 2007 12:48 PM | Report abuse

proud - What I don't get is why you believe that Al Qaeda will stay in Iraq if we leave. Al Qaeda is in Iraq to fight us, not the Iraqis.

Al Qaeda will go where we go. If we're not in Iraq, they will leave Iraq - the Iraqis probaly will kick their butts out as soon as we leave anyway.

The most viable and probably most effective fight against terrorism was in Afghanistan and Pakistan. We left that to create a complete and utter mess in Iraq. Afghanistan and Pakistan are probably still the most effective places to be fighting terrorism, yet you still rationalize that "the fight is in Iraq."

The "Commander Guy" (an accurate quote from a public speech given by the C-I-C) is grasping at straws. You already know what the September evaluation is going to say. You're just ahead of the curve in trying to rationalize it.

The only legitimate rationale for being in Iraq anymore is to prevent Civil War. But that's imposible because their Civil War is already underway, thanks to Mr. Bremmer.

If you want to fight terrorism, I do, then use you head and get real about where and how to fight it. Iraq is not the place. We simply waste lives and national treasure there. If I'm going to ask a U.S. serviceman to risk his life, I want it to be for something meaningful and worthwhile. Dying in Iraq is just a waste due to incompentents at the top of our government and the bozos on K street who led them down the path to this point.

Does Dick Lugar have enough credibilty enough source for you? Or is he just another surrend monkey? "In a floor speech Monday, Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., said the U.S. should reduce the military's role in Iraq and called on Bush to press other diplomatic and economic initiatives instead. Because of Lugar's position as the top Republican on the Foreign Relations Committee, his speech was a blow to the administration as it tries to shore up sagging political support for the unpopular war."

Posted by: Anonymous | June 26, 2007 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Murdoch and his china ties, from ny times. For those who care about the destruction of the media:

Posted by: rufus | June 26, 2007 11:13 AM | Report abuse

"|" says "We're long past the time to leave."

You just don't get it; we fight Al Qaeda now or we go back and fight them later. Even some of your lib buddies understand this.

e.g. "we are now firmly enmeshed in this generation's Vietnam... with the difference being that pulling out - without an international force replacing US troops - may not be possible for many years."

Posted by: Bokonon | June 26, 2007 08:20 AM

So simple even bokonon gets it.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | June 26, 2007 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Here's a good article on online political fundraising:

Posted by: Tom C. | June 26, 2007 10:30 AM | Report abuse

"The fight against AlQaeda now has it's central front in Iraq, whether it did before or not."

Okay, so we pull out. Al Quaeda then looks to find another place to fight us. Their terror is against us, not the Iraqis.

Your guys then pull another "Bring it on!" bonehead move and we find ourselves creating with insurgent terroroists somewhere else.

Why do the Powers That Be keep talking about Iran when there's still a job to do in Afghanistan. One that almost everybody in this country supported before.

Nah, we have to go further down the rabbit hole into Wonderland where up is down, down is up, a surge is met with a counter surge (surpise, surprise), where the way to honor those Killed in Action is to get more Killed in Action.

We're long past the time to leave. You're only rationalizing an absolute disaster. The military performed its mission and won. The politicians in charge gave our military an additional mission which it was not prepared to do, and the politicians lost, which means the military lost by default.

Unless thousands of ready and willing Iraqi soldiers can be put into action in this debacle, it's time to turn out the light, it's over.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 26, 2007 12:33 AM | Report abuse

"incentivizartion" - Is this a new word in RNC talking points?

Posted by: Anonymous | June 26, 2007 12:19 AM | Report abuse

Wow. Well thought out. Concise arguements. Good arguement GOP. I could dig in, with the why's, but I will give you that. It's the least I can do :)

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 25, 2007 8:50 PM | Report abuse

"|" says: "At this point, money and men lost in Iraq are just that - lost"

Parroting your leftenant Reid, I see. The fight against AlQaeda now has it's central front in Iraq, whether it did before or not. Go back and look at the votes if you doubt the decision, but stop attmepting to rewrite history. The legislators had the will to authorize use of force to oust Saddam then, as did the rest of the coalition

As we sit at home with the luxury of pondering and debating the wisdom of going into Iraq, American troops are taking the offensive in Diyala province, killing Al Qaeda operatives and reaching out to strike at other al Qaeda bases in the province, including Khalis, Muqdadiyah, and a host of small towns up and down the Diyala River Valley and along the Iranian border where al Qaeda has established bases, training camps, and logistical nodes.

As expected, Al Qaeda is surging against our surge, attempting to convince us that we have lost when it is they who are losing.

Setting benchmarks is a reasonable incentivizartion, but the path toward political reconciliation will be long, tortuous, and marked by setbacks.

It will not follow timelines dictated from Washington, and it will not be accomplished by a nicely typed legislative package. War, is messy, unpredictable, and not subject to timelines.

Responsible is not abandoning our commitment to our allies in Iraq.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | June 25, 2007 8:26 PM | Report abuse

or it's their fault WE'RE killing them

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 7:55 PM | Report abuse

hey, "eventhepostgetsit," are you really equating Bush with Lincoln? I have to tell you, that's one of the least logical things I have ever heard, right up there with Iraqis potentially embracing us following the invasion.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 7:31 PM | Report abuse

It's almost the right set this all up. Like, it was a plan. Or something. What if Rosie is right? What if Bush really is behind 9/11. Scary stuff

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 7:26 PM | Report abuse

proudtobeGOP, what is responsible about leaving such a large percentage of our troops to fight a holding action in Iraq when there are other, potentially more urgent situations which could blow up overnight? Here I refer to Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, Taiwan, and so on... not to mention such traditional rivals as China and Russia (remember them?) Contrary to the bill of goods sold the American people by the neocons, Iraq was NOT the most urgent foreign policy problem, not by a long shot. At the time we invaded, we had no other, but our involvement there - without UN approval - coupled with Bush's bumbling and ineffective diplomacy have both created enemies where none earlier existed and fostered a climate in which traditional bad actors felt empowered to cause trouble. At this point, money and men lost in Iraq are just that - lost - and without improving the social and political situation in the Middle East. We need to remember to be ready for our real threats when they occur, and that means redeploying troops now serving as targets for ungrateful Iraqis.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 7:21 PM | Report abuse

** EXCLUSIVE ** NEW YORK TIMES Executive Editor Bill Keller has set a Page One placement on Tuesday for a controversial examination of Rupert Murdoch's ties to Communist China, newsroom sources tell the DRUDGE REPORT... MORE... "

Tomorrow is the beginning of the end for your boy GOP. I'm sorry. It's not my fault. IT IS good for this country and the media. We are a self-government. We need all the REAL news we can get with none of the FAKE news. NONE if it. Let's go back to the old days. When there was accountabilibty

Posted by: rufus | June 25, 2007 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Thank you ellec. That's all I'm saying people, priorities. Priorities. Like the blood of my brothers and sisters, as opposed to Bush and his cronies making trillions. Priorities. What do you care about more. A stack of pieces of green paper with pictures on it or you brother/sister home. Priorities

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 25, 2007 6:48 PM | Report abuse

It's great that the Democrats are drawing so much more support than the Republicans. This really supports the notion that the Democrats are taking on issues that really matter to the American people. From health care to education and poverty, these issues take precedence over an ever-inflating military budget that seems to bring no resolve for any country involved.

The Borgen Project states that just $19 billion annually can end starvation and $23 billon annually can reverse the spread of Malaria and AIDS. In contrast, we have spent over $340 billion in Iraq. With poverty being so easily addressed, it is no wonder that a war-touting Republican side isn't doing well in the polls or with the American people.

Posted by: ellec | June 25, 2007 6:11 PM | Report abuse

thanks for the tip koz. OOh...must-see tv!

Great article btw. I especially liked the part about how liberals claim "we can bring the war to a "responsible end" but still conduct counterterrorism operations. The problem with this argument is what a "responsible end" would mean.

What is "responsible" about the large-scale bloodshed that would surely occur if we left the Iraqis behind with insufficient security forces? What is "responsible" about proving al-Qaeda's thesis that America can be defeated anywhere with enough suicide bombings?

and "We are "supporting the troops" by demanding an immediate withdrawal from Iraq. Levin says that "our troops should hear an unequivocal message from Congress that we support them." He explains his vote to fund and "support" the troops while simultaneously trying to legislate the war's end.

But what kind of "support" and "unequivocal message" do the troops hear from leaders in Congress who call their commanders "incompetent" or declare the war "lost"?

Such statements provide nearly instant enemy propaganda to every mud hut with a satellite dish in Iraq and throughout the Arab world.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | June 25, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

If you want self-obsessed and narcissistic on TV tonight, opt for Morrisey on Letterman. Much more interesting, important and stimulating than ole breck boy.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 5:47 PM | Report abuse

"Rufus, I'm a Dem, but you're getting a little apoplexic. Over the past "10/50 years" it's been both Reps and Dems who have run this country"

Your reading what I'm posting but your not hearing what I'm saying. Read deeper. Do some research :)

Peace to you

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 25, 2007 5:41 PM | Report abuse

I'm not dylusional. I'm a dittohead. I'm not misinformed. I get my news from a source that makes me feel good about myself and my country. I'm a great American. I'm a patriot. I have to be right. I listen to Rush/Hannity/O'reilly/Malkin/Ingram

Posted by: dittohead | June 25, 2007 5:36 PM | Report abuse

"The New Media is compiled of talk radio and websites which points to the truth that is definitely lacking in the sea of hostile and biased liberalism, or the Old Media"

Straight from the mouth of Michelle Malkin herself. Hello Mrs. Malkin. How's the air down there. :)

"Maybe voters are increasingly turned off by controversy surrounding Edwards and his non-profit sleaziness"

We'll see GOP. I doubt it. The last election shocked you didn't it? There HAS to be a reason for all these lies and propoganda. There has to be a reason for Rush Limbaugh to exist.

Is it because he is real? Is he the sole lone person that is speacking the truth? If the answer to that is yes, or if you would add FOx "news" Hannity and O'Reilly to that , you are living in a dream world.

Switch the tables GOP. If all liberal news was coming from one or two sources, none of which the truth, what would you say.

Goose and the gander GOP.

Posted by: Rufus1133 | June 25, 2007 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, dems jockey for first tier money coming to the end of the 2nd quarter. Headlines show Edwards is losing his top-tier status in both polls and fundraising...

The Hill Headline: "Edwards Predicting Big Second-Quarter Drop-Off"

ABC News Headline: "Edwards Under A Microscope: Can He Keep His Spot In The Big Three?"

Daily News Headline: "Oh, Carolina! Edwards A Heel, Folks Here Say"

Maybe voters are increasingly turned off by controversy surrounding Edwards and his non-profit sleaziness... "The FEC may take issue with Edwards if he had already made up his mind to run as a candidate and there was an intentional effort to utilize an outside nonprofit to float the campaign for a while"

Trying to stem the tide, his campaign will trot out the Edward's Dog-and-Pony Show tonight on Jay Leno!

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | June 25, 2007 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Conservative talk radio and the Internet have fast become a wealth of well researched honest opinion pieces written by conservative writers and bloggers. The New Media is compiled of talk radio and websites which points to the truth that is definitely lacking in the sea of hostile and biased liberalism, or the Old Media.

Posted by: marie | June 25, 2007 5:15 PM | Report abuse

President Lincoln chose to fight a bloody and unpopular war because he believed the enemy had to be defeated. He was right. And to me, that sounds more than a bit like the situation our country faces today. What path will we choose?

Posted by: even the post gets it | June 25, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

This past weekend, Barack Obama passed up two key opportunities to stand up and be counted when it comes to making good on his campaign themes of bringing people together, healing, and fighting cynicism. But instead of action to realize his proclaimed goals, all we got was slippery evasion and bland talk. If you think Obama can be a leader, examine his brhavior this past weekend and draw your own conclusions.

Posted by: ed | June 25, 2007 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Rufus, I'm a Dem, but you're getting a little apoplexic. Over the past "10/50 years" it's been both Reps and Dems who have run this country. Sure, I think the Rs generally have done a crappier job, especially the current administration. Most true conservatives would probably (under their breath) agree with me - deficits larger, more spending, govt intrusion into citizens lives, etc. But it's not like my Dem brethren are without fault. In general, there is way too much partisan crap from either side.

Posted by: Capster | June 25, 2007 5:04 PM | Report abuse

LOS ANGELES (AP) - When Paris Hilton was sprung from jail early, few were as outraged--and as outspoken--as the prosecutor who put her there.
But City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo's complaints of a two-tiered jail system where "the rich and powerful receive special treatment" have come to back to haunt him.

Soon after Hilton was sent back to jail earlier this month, he acknowledged his wife had committed a similar infraction--driving with a suspended license. Among other things, he also admitted sticking the taxpayers with the bill after his wife crashed his city- issued car in 2004, and acknowledged that staffers have occasionally run personal errands and baby-sat his children.

Delgadillo is a 46-year-old up-and-coming Democrat whose close advisers are said to refer to themselves as "Team 1600," a reference to the Pennsylvania Avenue address of the White House.

He'll fir right in with all those crooked Dems in his party.

Posted by: another crooked Dem headed for DC | June 25, 2007 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Hooooowwwwlllll !!!!!!!!

Posted by: frantic moonbat | June 25, 2007 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Only the republicans have free speech in this country. THE REST OF US do HAVE TO PAY FOR IT James.


check out today's news:

Court loosens election ad limits
Suspects in woman's death in due court
Court backs Bush on faith initiative
Court supports school in 'Bong Hits' case
Free love: Was there price to pay?

Free stories, but are linked. More wins for Bush and his cronies. More losses for the American people. And the right woul dhvae you believe it's all the liberals fault. Who has been running/destroying this country for the last ten/50 years ?

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 25, 2007 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Simple question, I'll follow up later:

How can speech be free if you have to pay cash for it?

Posted by: JamesCH | June 25, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

good sarcastic post BLarg

Posted by: JKrish | June 25, 2007 3:00 PM | Report abuse

"Good! I've always said that the problem with politics is that the role of corporations and special interests is too small. I applaud this step towards removing voters from the process entirely."

GOP and his buddiesa are just SOOOO proad of the destruction they have done to this country. It's funny to them. It's a game.

It's not a game to me.


Posted by: JKrish | June 25, 2007 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Us weekly and the other pappazzi papers Like murdochs star mag, are republican devices. They are used to silence LA. They are used to say, "You ar enot like them. You cannot listen to tehse people."

I'd like to see the papprazzi STALK O'REilly Hannity and Murdock daily. Then we can see what they are up to. Hey, they follow Paris Hilton everywhere she goes, MAKING HER A CELEB. The right is responsible. The right killed Princess DI.

Posted by: rufus1133 | June 25, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

"King's much-discussed post-jail interview with Paris Hilton"

But CNN is a liberal station, right? What a crock. The liberal media bias is a Republican myth. Talk-radio 90% right. Tv media 80% conservative( they bought it). CNN and MSNBC both conservative IE Tucker Scarbourg matthews wolf blitzer. No liberal voices silenced by the right.

Money talks I guess. American values walkes

Posted by: rufus | June 25, 2007 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 1:50 PM | Report abuse

CNN has bumped Michael Moore from his scheduled appearance on Larry King Live in favor of King's much-discussed post-jail interview with Paris Hilton

Fat and stupid or skinny and stupid. Put them on the old and stupid show and no one will notice the difference.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

"The decision could lead to a bigger role for corporations, unions and other interest groups in the 2008 presidential and congressional elections."

Good! I've always said that the problem with politics is that the role of corporations and special interests is too small. I applaud this step towards removing voters from the process entirely.

Posted by: Blarg | June 25, 2007 1:33 PM | Report abuse

McCain-Feingold defanged:
The Supreme Court, split 5-4, today upheld an appeals court ruling that an anti-abortion group should have been allowed to air ads during the final two months before the 2004 elections. The law unreasonably limits speech and violates the group's First Amendment rights, the court said.

The decision could lead to a bigger role for corporations, unions and other interest groups in the 2008 presidential and congressional elections. Chief Justice John Roberts, joined by his conservative allies, wrote a majority opinion upholding the appeals court ruling.

Course correction in favor of free speech. Now, will cons forgive McCain? please?

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | June 25, 2007 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Am I as stoopid as I seem? you bet. I think I'll go over to e-bay and see if I can get a life.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 25, 2007 1:18 PM | Report abuse

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