GOP Governor’s Organization Outraises Democrats By $10M in First Quarter

GOP Governor's Organization Outraises Democrats By $10M in First Quarter $100 bills $100 bills. (Mike_kiev/Dreamstime.com)

By Charles Kim | Monday, 11 April 2022 04:42 PM

The Republican Governors Association announced it raised $33.1 million in the first quarter of 2022, outpacing its Democratic counterpart by $10 million, the organization announced Monday.

"Joe Biden's out-of-control border crisis, repeated foreign policy failures, and leftist agenda that has caused skyrocketing inflation are top of mind for every American voter. They are seeing the impact of Democratic leadership in Washington and state capitols and don't like it and are ready for a change," RGA Executive Director Dave Rexrode said in a press release announcing the fundraising effort. "This record-setting first quarter equips the RGA with the resources necessary to highlight Democrats' failures and support our Republican incumbents and candidates across the country."

According to the association, the amount raised represents an increase of 40% over the last comparable midterm election cycle in 2018.

"The financial success represents significant support for the work our governors are doing in states across the country and a strong desire to have more governor offices flip from Democrat to Republican in 2022," the release said.

The group said it plans to use the money to "make major early investments" in 2022 battleground states including television ads in Michigan and Wisconsin, digital advertising in Kansas, Michigan, and New Mexico, and supporting GOP incumbents seeking reelection this year.

The Democratic Governors Association also announced record fundraising during the first quarter, bringing in more than $23 million, calling it the "largest first-quarter fundraising in history."

"Democratic governors work every day to strengthen and protect our democracy and make progress for the people they represent. That's why we are seeing record levels of interest and support from Americans across the country," DGA Executive Director Noam Lee said in the organization's own Monday press release. "Governors' races in 2022 will determine the direction of our country for years to come, and the DGA is at the forefront of fighting Republican power grabs designed to subvert democracy. Expanded access to affordable health care, increased funding for public education, and abortion rights are all on the line."

According to that organization, the increase represents a 180% increase over the last midterm election cycle in 2018 and was comprised mainly of "first-time" donors.

Although the focus during midterm election cycles primarily goes to the federal races for the House and Senate, Democrats are increasing their scope to races for governor in battleground states that they see as “existential” for its chances to hold the White House, Politico reported in March.

"My entire donating life has always been centered around Congress, but I really think that if you care about democracy, you need to worry about these governors' races," Steve Elmendorf, a Democratic donor and lobbyist told Politico. "This is critical for us to win in 2024."

Morgan Jackson, an adviser to DGA Chairman and North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, told Politico that Republicans know that local and state elections can positively impact the federal races for their party, giving them an advantage.

"Republicans figured out that if you can rule locally, you can control a lot of the process federally, and we're finally, finally, seeing national Democrats come around to realizing that, too," Jackson said in the article. "A lot of the Democratic donor base didn't see governor's races as very sexy, compared to federal ones, but I think we're going to see historic investments this year."

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