Where is the Democratic "big money"?
June 20, 2017 8:36 PM   Subscribe

I want to better understand the [sources of] funding of US political candidates, particularly Democratic candidates. Please disabuse me of my preconceived notions.

Money plays such a huge role in these US elections. Republicans have seemingly endless funds to bankroll (or steamroll, if you will) their candidates toward wins. See: Gianforte, Handel.

Considering the "Democrats and the Hollywood / Silicon Valley elite" stereotype, I am trying to better understand where Democrats are falling short in their funding strategies. Do these Democratic elites not donate the way wealthy Republican donors do and if so, why? Or is this really an issue with the DCCC, et al? Are we being blown out of the water by PACs alone? Is this as simple as blaming the ramifications of Citizens United?

I want to understand where Democrats' funding shortcomings are, and what strategies we can implement to ameliorate this discrepancy in funding. Or, am I just looking at this all wrong?

If you have links to practical guides to optimal political fundraising strategies in the modern/social media age, please share! Particularly: what can little old middle class me do to aid fundraising efforts?
posted by nightrecordings to Law & Government (4 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
It's hard to aggregate up PACs by party but at the presidential level at least your underlying assumption is false.

Not only that but the dems are way more dependent upon big donations from their elite. And their elite give more

Even on a per candidate basis the dems raised more in the house and senate in 2016

Open secrets has the data.

Where the republican advantage lies might be in the non-FEC space. Like I don't see the NRA in the data.
posted by JPD at 8:51 PM on June 20, 2017 [4 favorites]


Forgot to add: so I may do my own research later and dig a bit deeper, please cite sources where possible (like Open Secrets, as mentioned above, although direct links are even more appreciated). Thank you!
posted by nightrecordings at 8:55 PM on June 20, 2017


PAC's

2016:Labor Unions

1998:Labor Unions

Ten even-year elections between 1998 and 2016

Each election yields a new top-20 donor list

20 donors in each of 10 election years. 20 x 10 = 200

Over the past 10 elections, since 1998, there have been 200 top-20 donors to the Democratic party

Of these 200, 200 have been labor unions.

Is it fair to say that Democrats are in the pocket of labor unions?

No

Why no?

Because Labor PAC dollars are a drop in the bucket compared to....

SUPER PACS

See for yourself
posted by BadgerDoctor at 9:33 PM on June 20, 2017 [3 favorites]


The biggest name in Democratic fundraising (indeed in all political fundraising) is probably Tom Steyer and his Fehr, LLC. Donald Sussman gave the most money to any candidate with contributions to Hillary in excess of $21 million. Opensecrets (linked above) has tons of the nitty gritty details. This page is particularly insightful, I think. Note that the Las Vegas Sands and the Adelson Drug Clinic are both actually the same guy and the major player for the RNC, despite the bigger share of attention commanded by the Koch brothers.
posted by Lame_username at 11:39 AM on June 21, 2017 [1 favorite]


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