The Daily Brew: Making sense of the 2nd quarter presidential fundraising

Today’s Brew compiles all the second-quarter presidential financial reports + highlights our upcoming webinar on SCOTUS’ rulings this term affecting the administrative state  
The Daily Brew

Welcome to the Wednesday, July 17, Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. President Trump leads 2020 presidential candidates in second-quarter fundraising
  2. One week until our July 24 briefing on the Supreme Court and the administrative state
  3. Twenty candidates are running for six Toledo City Council seats

President Trump leads 2020 presidential candidates in second- quarter fundraising

The deadline for presidential candidates to file second-quarter financial reports with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) was Monday. These reports summarize how much money each campaign raised from individual donors, political action committees, and other campaign committees. Candidates also reported how much their campaign spent during the quarter and the amount of money they had at the end of the period—also known as the amount of “cash on hand.”

Here are three highlights from those reports: 

  • President Donald Trump (R) led all presidential candidates with $26.5 million in receipts. Individual contributions accounted for $8.8 million of that total while amounts received from PACs and political committees were $17.6 million.

  • Pete Buttigieg (D) more than tripled the amount he received during the first quarter, reporting $24.9 million in individual contributions. Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren followed with $22 million and $19.2 million, respectively.

  • Bernie Sanders spent $14.1 million during the second quarter—the most expenditures of any candidate. He also ended the quarter with $27.3 million—the most cash among the Democratic candidates. Only two other Democratic candidates—Buttigieg and Warren—reported having about $20 million or more in cash on hand heading into the third quarter.

The following two charts show individual contributions, total receipts, expenditures, and cash on hand for each presidential candidate.



The “Individual Contributions” column represents donations from individuals. The “Total Receipts” column includes individual donations and contributions from other sources, including political committees and loans from the candidate.

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One week until our July 24 briefing on the Supreme Court and the administrative state 

As you know from reading the Brew these past few months, I love learning about the U.S. Supreme Court. For example, did you know that of the 68 decisions issued by the Court this past term, there were more 9-0 decisions (22) than 5-4 ones (19)? And that Justice Stephen Breyer wrote the opinion in more of those 9-0 cases—five—than any other justice?

My colleagues and I at Ballotpedia don’t just calculate statistics associated with the current term, we also analyze the effect the Court’s decisions have on public policy. One area of particular interest this term was the administrative state, as the Court heard cases regarding such principles as the nondelegation doctrine, judicial review of agency interpretations of laws, and Auer deference.

We’re hosting a briefing on the Court’s rulings on these issues and how they’re likely to affect policymaking on July 24 at 11:00 am Central time. We’ll cover the decisions in cases such as Gundy v. United States and Kisor v. Wilkie, among others. I can’t wait for what figures to be a really interesting session–click the link below to register and join me.


Twenty candidates are running for six Toledo City Council seats

Sixty of America’s 100 largest cities by population will hold elections in 2019, including contests for mayor, city council, and other city offices like clerk and treasurer. While the numbers vary from year to year due to special elections to fill vacancies, more of these contests take place in odd-numbered years. In the two most-recent odd-numbered years—2015 and 2017—an average of 54 cities held elections for council members for an average of 417 seats per year. In the last two even-numbered years, an average of 46.5 cities held council elections which decided an average of 204.5 seats.

Last week, the filing deadline passed in Toledo, Ohio – the 66th largest city. Twenty candidates filed to run. These races are for council members elected in each of the city’s six districts. The mayor and six at-large council members were elected in 2017. 

Although Toledo’s municipal elections are officially nonpartisan, party affiliations are available for each candidate. Four incumbents—all Democrats—are running for re-election. One Democratic incumbent is not seeking another term while one Republican incumbent is term-limited.

Five of the six districts will hold a primary election September 10 since more than two candidates are running in each. The top two vote recipients will then meet in the general election November 5.