Who Won Fiscal Friends During the Shutdown?
OpenSecrets.org, a website tracking money in U.S. politics, recently examined the financial backers behind a group of twenty Republican House members the New York Times labeled “dissidents.” Looking at quarterly reports for the group shows that the shutdown was not a way to win friends and influence people
Using campaign finance reports, OpenSecrets surveyed the nineteen members running for re-election in the House. In the first quarter they averaged $135,889, and the second quarter saw their average increase to $162,974. In the third quarter, which lasted from July 1 to September 30, the sum only totaled $104,868.
The group includes Republicans like Louisiana’s John Flemming who has been quoted saying that, ”Obamacare is the most dangerous piece of legislation ever passed in Congress.” This is characteristic of the stance of other members, who on the eve of the shutdown, were adamant in the fight against the Affordable Care Act. They saw their fundraising results decline, and it may be part of a bigger trend.
The disappearing money trail isn’t only tailored to individuals. FEC filings for the period of September 1 to September 30, 2013 show that the Democratic National Committee received a total of $7,380,803.86 in contributions. The committee has a year-to-date total of $46,086,500.46. The Republican National Committee in the same period received $6,749,234.22, year-to-date contributions are $56,802,839.62.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the Democrats edging out the Republicans in September marks the first time that in seventeen months that the DNC earned more money than the RNC. The Democrats will need to continue beating out the Republicans as far as raising money for the National Committees goes if they want to close the yearly totals. Even when the picture is reigned back in slightly to Congress, the same results are visible. In Congressional campaign committee filings, the Democrats continued their monetary victory over Republicans with $6,738,907.76 for the period ending September 30, compared to $4,026,941.56. Republicans currently hold a majority of seats in the House of Representatives.
The decline in fundraising revenue to the intransigent House GOP members shouldn’t worry national Republicans as much as the more widely dispersed decline in contributions compared to Democratic counterparts. The GOP members who pushed for the government shutdown successfully derailed the American system of government for sixteen days may have also harmed the Republican’s ability to raise money for campaigns. This is a potential impediment for the party’s 2014 election goals.