The Massachusetts 2012 Senate race is shaping up to be an expensive contest, and although I think money is corrupting our political system, it plays a huge factor in our elections. Fortunately, Open Secrets (a project of the Center for Responsive Politics) that analyzes campaign contributions has finally posted its breakdown of our senate race. Most remarkable is the fact that Elizabeth Warren took in slightly more money than Scott Brown, who still has slightly more than a 2 to 1 advantage.
As it stands, Scott Brown has a 2 to 1 advantage in cash on hand with $12,892,256. One third of this sizable chunk of change ($3-4 million) came from his previous race against the ill-fated, ill-equipped candidacy of Martha Coakley. Elizabeth Warren has evidently paid some bills; of the $8.9 million raised, she has $6.8 million on hand. Not surprisingly, the Globe’s article touting the amount of money Warren raised from out-of-staters is both stupid and misleading.
Individual Contributions. It would be nice to say that the decline in the percentage of individual contributions to the Brown campaign reflects him being co-opted by larger interests. But this decline could be attributed to the fact that he is the incumbent in the race. In 2010 individual donations made up 93% of his campaign funds; this time around, they account for 79%. Of the $8.9 million dollars the Warren campaign has raised thus far, individual donations accounted for 98% of the total. I have to wonder whether this percentage will decrease as more money is collected.
Out of State Donations. Elizabeth Warren received more a greater percentage out-of-state donations than Scott Brown did. In 2012, she received 60% of her money ($562,810) from out-of-state and 40% ($375,159) from in state; Brown raised 45% of his funds raised ($1,483,865) from out-of-state. The percentages are different, but in dollars, Brown accepted more than three times as much as Warren. Interestingly, Warren’s percentages are the exactly the same as Scott Brown’s in 2010 when 60% of his campaign contributions from out-of-state donations.
Sectors & Industry. Scott Brown received more donations from every sector, except labor. There’s no question who’s raking in the bucks from the financial sector. For every dollar Elizabeth Warren ($44,200) received in donations, Scott Brown raked in about $32 for a total of $1,574,250.
Labor. Money from labor is not much of a factor at this point. Although Warren ($44,000) has received 4 times as much from labor as Brown ($11,400), the numbers are a small fraction of a percent of the total amount of money Warren raised. Business has contributed far, far more than labor.