Campaign finance requirements govern the raising and spending of money for political campaigns. While not the only factor in an election’s outcome, successful fundraising can provide a candidate with advantages, such as the ability to boost name recognition and promote a message. In addition, fundraising can indicate enthusiasm for candidates and parties.
This article lists the top individual fundraisers in Texas by their party affiliation as well as the top ten fundraisers overall. It is based on campaign finance reports that active Texas candidate political action committees (candidate PACs) submitted to the Texas Ethics Commission. It includes activity between Jan. 1, 2021, and June 30, 2021. Candidate PACs represent individuals who have run for state or local office at any point, including past and present officeholders. This article does not include non-candidate PACs.
Top Texas Fundraisers
The top fundraisers in Texas elections are shown below. For the purpose of this article, fundraisers may include individuals who are on the ballot this election cycle as well as those not currently running for office but who have received contributions during this reporting period. Individuals are listed with the office that they held at the time of publication, if applicable.
In the Democratic party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:
- Mike Collier – $757,110
- Joe Jaworski – $451,374
- Martin Hoffman – $316,694
- Marla Cuellar – $202,225
- Kyle Carter – $186,400
In the Republican party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:
- Greg Abbott (Governor) – $20,872,440
- Dan Patrick (Lieutenant Governor) – $5,025,624
- Donald Huffines – $4,123,108
- George P. Bush (Land Commissioner) – $2,264,138
- Ken Paxton (Attorney General) – $1,819,469
Overall, the top Texas Democratic candidate PACs raised $1.91 million in this period. The top Republican candidate PACs raised $34.10 million. Texas candidate PACs in the Jan. 1, 2021, through June 30, 2021, filing period raised a total of $168.82 million. Combined, these Texas candidates account for 21% of total fundraising.
Contributions to the top five Democratic candidates made up 2% of the total amount reported by their party’s campaigns. Contributions to the top five Republican fundraisers comprised 57% of the total amount reported by Republican campaigns.
The table below provides additional data from the campaign finance reports from the top ten fundraisers. For more information on fundraising and spending for Texas races on the 2022 ballot, click here.
|Name||Party Affiliation||Raised this period||Spent this period|
|Greg Abbott||Republican Party||$20,872,440||$8,866,677|
|Dan Patrick||Republican Party||$5,025,624||$827,206|
|Donald Huffines||Republican Party||$4,123,108||$1,386,026|
|George P. Bush||Republican Party||$2,264,138||$883,852|
|Ken Paxton||Republican Party||$1,819,469||$263,713|
|Eva Guzman||Republican Party||$1,051,723||$50,755|
|Dade Phelan||Republican Party||$1,040,018||$833,007|
|Glenn Hegar||Republican Party||$853,050||$763,007|
|Mike Collier||Democratic Party||$757,110||$508,361|
|Dawn Buckingham||Republican Party||$587,780||$155,187|
Campaign Finance Reporting Periods
The reports filed with the Texas Ethics Commission cover Jan. 1, 2021, through June 30, 2021. Candidate PACs in Texas must file semiannual financial reports of their fundraising and campaign spending. During election years, candidate PACs also file additional financial reports before primary and general elections.
The next semiannual campaign finance reporting deadline for Texas legislators and candidates will include activity between July 1, 2021, and Dec. 31, 2021.
This article was published in partnership with Transparency USA. Click here to learn more about that partnership.