California senate president raises $2.9 million this election cycle

According to campaign finance reports filed with the California Secretary of State, California Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis has raised $2,930,583 and spent $578,638 between Jan. 1, 2021, and May 26, 2022. Kounalakis currently serves as the president of the state senate.

Kounalakis is a member of the Democratic Party and assumed office in 2019. In California, the president of the senate is one of the roles of the lieutenant governor.The primary job of a state senate president is to preside over legislative sessions and ensure that members of the chamber abide by procedural rules. Kounalakis is running for reelection in 2022.

Kounalakis’ reported campaign finance activity, by quarter (2017-2022)

Source: Transparency USA

Contributions to Kounalakis

Of the $2.9 million already reported in the 2022 election cycle, $19,610 came from the top 10 donors.

Top Donors to Kounalakis (1/1/2021 – 5/26/2022)

RankTotal AmountDonor NameDonor Type
1.$32,400.00California State Association of Electrical WorkersEntity
2.$32,400.00California State Pipe Trades Council PACEntity
3.$17,400.00Professional Engineers in California Government Pecg PACEntity
4.$16,700.00Raise the Wage California Sponsored by the California State Council of Service Employees and Its AffiliatesEntity
5.$16,200.00Alexandra Tsakopoulos InvestmentsEntity
6.$16,200.00Anna MorfitIndividual
7.$16,200.00Ayman SarriedineIndividual
8.$16,200.00Brianne M TsakopoulosIndividual
9.$16,200.00California Attorneys Administrative Law Judges and Hearing Officers in State Employment Aka Case PACEntity
10.$16,200.00California Citrus Mutual PACEntity

Expenditures by Kounalakis

Kounalakis reported $578,638 in expenditures, with $437,350 going to the 10 payees topping this list. 

Top Expenditures by Kounalakis (1/1/2021 – 5/26/2022)

RankTotal AmountPayee NamePayee Type
1.$60,000.00David Binder Research IncEntity
2.$56,161.80Deane & CompanyEntity
3.$47,500.00Daily Consulting LLCEntity
4.$46,861.27Actblue Technical ServicesEntity
5.$42,500.00Bertolina & Barnato ConsultingEntity
6.$41,343.04Aleksandra ReetzIndividual
7.$40,650.00Tristan TranslationsEntity
8.$40,500.00Schuyler HudakIndividual
9.$40,000.00Bearstar Strategies IncEntity
10.$21,834.65Card Service CenterEntity

How donations to Kounalakis compare to the equivalent role in other states

A number of factors, including whether the position holder is the lieutenant governor or a state senator, can influence donor activity. Here is how Kounalakis compares to the 10 other senate presidents with campaign finance data available from Transparency USA in 2022:

Across the U.S., 30 senate presidents are members of the Republican Party and 19 are members of the Democratic Party, with one vacancy. The lieutenant governor serves as the president of the senate in 25 states. In other states, the president of the senate is a state senator chosen by the members of the chamber. 

The data above are based on campaign finance reports that active California PACs submitted to the California Secretary of State. Transparency USA publishes campaign finance data following major reporting deadlines. State or federal law may require filers to submit additional reports.

California ReportsDue Date
1st Pre-Election – Primary4/28/2022
2nd Pre-Election – Primary5/26/2022
1st Pre-Election – General9/29/2022
2nd Pre- Election – General10/27/2022

This article is a joint publication from Ballotpedia and Transparency USA, who are working together to provide campaign finance information for state-level elections. Learn more about our work here.