Eleven presidential candidates raised a combined $390 million in January

Michael Bloomberg (D) led presidential candidates in fundraising for January 2020, according to financial reports filed with the Federal Election Commission Thursday. Bloomberg raised $263.8 million in January, including $263.7 million in self-funding. He was followed by Tom Steyer (D), who raised $65.3 million, including $64.7 million in self-funding. Bernie Sanders ($25.2 million) and Elizabeth Warren ($11.0 million) were the only other candidates to raise more than $10 million

As of the January 31, 2020, reporting cutoff, President Donald Trump (R) had $92.6 million in cash on hand, the most of all presidential candidates. Bloomberg followed with $55.1 million, then Steyer with $17.9 million. Sanders had $16.8 million, and no other candidates had more than $10 million on hand.

President Trump’s $217.7 million raised to date is 27.0% more than the inflation-adjusted $166.0 million President Barack Obama (D) had raised at this point in his 2012 re-election campaign. According to Republican National Committee (RNC) finance reports filed Thursday, Trump and the RNC have raised a combined $810.9 million. At this point in the 2012 campaign cycle, Obama and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) had raised a combined inflation-adjusted $563.9 million.

The eight remaining noteworthy Democratic candidates have collectively raised $1.164 billion this cycle, while the three noteworthy Republicans have collectively raised $233.5 million. The eight Democrats had a combined $110.7 million in cash on hand to the three Republicans’ combined $97.5 million.

Since the start of the election cycle, the top five Democratic fundraisers are Bloomberg ($464.1 million), Steyer ($271.6 million), Sanders ($134.3 million), Warren ($93.0 million), and Pete Buttigieg ($83.0 million). The 11 noteworthy Democratic and Republican candidates have raised a combined $1.398 billion since the start of the election cycle.

Click here to learn more about 2020 Presidential election campaign finance.

Additional reading:
Presidential election, 2020
Presidential candidates, 2020
Democratic presidential nomination, 2020
Republican presidential nomination, 2020

House Republicans’ campaign arm outraises Democrats for the first time this cycle, RNC outraises DNC for ninth consecutive month

The Republican National Committee (RNC) outraised its Democratic counterpart by more than two-to-one for a ninth consecutive month, according to February 2020 campaign finance reports filed with the FEC Thursday. Republican House and Senate committees also outraised their Democratic counterparts.

The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) raised $10.1 million and spent $4.8 million last month, while the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) raised $8.5 million and spent $7.5 million. So far in the 2020 cycle, the NRSC has raised 8.4% more than the DSCC ($77.7 million to $71.5 million). The NRSC’s 8.4% fundraising advantage is up from 7.3% in January but down from 8.7% in December.

On the House side, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) raised $12.7 million and spent $7.5 million last month, while the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) raised $12.1 million and spent $7.0 million. This is the first time the NRCC has outraised the DCCC during the 2020 campaign cycle. So far in the cycle, the DCCC has raised 33.4% more than the NRCC ($137.0 million to $97.8 million). The DCCC’s 33.4% fundraising advantage is down from 37.8% in January and 35.5% in December.

At this point in the 2018 campaign cycle, Democrats led in both Senate and House fundraising, although their advantage in the House was smaller than in this cycle. The DSCC had raised 25.2% more than the NRSC ($59.8 million to $46.4 million), while the DCCC had raised 18.7% more than the NRCC ($114.8 million to $95.1 million).

Republicans continue to lead in national committee fundraising, with the Republican National Committee (RNC) raising $27.2 million and spending $23.2 million while the Democratic National Committee (DNC) raised $10.8 million and spent $11.0 million. So far in the 2020 cycle, the RNC has raised 89.8% more than the DNC ($268.3 million to $102.0 million). The RNC’s 89.8% fundraising advantage is down from 90.2% in January but up from 88.9% in December.

At this point in the 2016 campaign cycle (the most recent presidential cycle), the RNC had a smaller 48.2% fundraising advantage over the DNC ($114.8 million to $70.2 million).

So far in the 2020 cycle, the RNC, NRSC, and NRCC have raised 35.3% more than the DNC, DSCC, and DCCC ($443.9 million to $310.5 million). The Republican fundraising advantage is up from 34.1% in January and 34.6% in December.

Click here to learn more about party committee fundraising 2019-2020

Additional reading:
Democratic National Committee
Republican National Committee
Fundraising in Congressional elections, 2018

2,577 major party candidates filed for 2020 Congress elections, no new retirements last week

As of February 24, 2020, 2,577 major party candidates have filed to run for the Senate and House of Representatives in 2020.

So far, 367 candidates are filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to run for U.S. Senate in 2020. Of those, 312—164 Democrats and 148 Republicans—are from one of the two major political parties. In 2018, 527 candidates filed with the FEC to run for U.S. Senate, including 137 Democrats and 240 Republicans.

For U.S. House, 2,492 candidates are filed with the FEC to run in 2020. Of those, 2,265—1,077 Democrats and 1,188 Republicans—are from one of the two major political parties. In 2018, 3,244 candidates filed with the FEC, including 1,566 Democrats and 1,155 Republicans.

Thirty-six representatives are not seeking re-election. Of those, 27 are Republican and nine are Democratic. Four senators (three Republicans and one Democrat) are not running for re-election. In 2018, 55 total members of Congress—18 Democrats and 37 Republicans—did not seek re-election.

On November 3, 2020, 35 Senate seats and all 435 House seats are up for election. Of those Senate seats, 33 are regularly scheduled elections, while the other two are special elections in Arizona and Georgia. Twelve are Democratic-held seats and 23 are Republican-held seats. In the House, Democrats currently hold a majority with 232 seats.

Additional reading
United States Senate elections, 2020
United States House of Representatives elections, 2020
List of U.S. Congress incumbents who are not running for re-election in 2020

Sanders receives most pageviews in past week, followed by Bloomberg and Buttigieg

Each week, we report the number of pageviews received by 2020 presidential campaigns on Ballotpedia. These numbers reflect the time investments of our community of thousands of readers who visit a Ballotpedia because they think the candidate is worth knowing more about, whether they believe the candidate has a strong chance of winning or is an unknown who warrants a closer look.

Last week, Bernie Sanders led all Democratic campaigns in pageviews. His campaign page was viewed 7,351 times, equaling 22.3% of pageviews for all Democratic campaigns this week. He was followed by Michael Bloomberg with 18.1% of pageviews and Pete Buttigieg with 15.9%.

Elizabeth Warren was the only Democratic candidate to receive more pageviews this week relative to last week. Her campaign page received 1.8% more pageviews than the week prior. All other Democratic candidates saw a decrease in pageviews relative to last week. The candidate with the largest decrease among them was Amy Klobuchar with a 34.6% decrease.

The top three Democratic presidential candidates in lifetime pageviews are Buttigieg with 178,783, Joe Biden with 166,119, and Sanders with 153,947.

Donald Trump ranked second of the three Republican candidates in pageviews last week. Trump received 5,501 pageviews, while Roque de la Fuente received 6,155 and Bill Weld received 4,951.

Click here to learn more about Presidential campaign 2020 pageviews on Ballotpedia.

Joaquin Castro endorses Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez in Texas Democratic U.S. Senate primary

U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro (D) endorsed Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez (D) for U.S. Senate Tuesday. Tzintzún Ramirez is one of 12 candidates seeking the Democratic nomination in a March 3 primary.

Castro is the first member of Congress to endorse Tzintzún Ramirez; her other endorsers include The Austin Chronicle, the Center for Popular Democracy, the Latino Victory Fund, and the Working Families Party. Lone Star Forward PAC launched a television ad buy in support of Tzintzún Ramirez Wednesday.

If none of the candidates reaches 50% support in the primary, the top two finishers will advance to a runoff on May 26. Every poll released so far has shown at least 34% of likely primary voters undecided. None of the 12 candidates has received more than 22% support in any one poll, although MJ Hegar (D) has led or tied for the lead in every poll since October.

Support from endorsers has also been spread among the candidates. Rep. Linda Sanchez (D), former Houston Mayor pro tem Gracie Saenz (D), and the Texas Democrats with Disabilities Caucus have endorsed Chris Bell. Amanda Edwards’ endorsers include The Dallas Morning News, the San Antonio Express-News, and the Afro American Police League. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, End Citizens United, Giffords PAC, and VoteVets have endorsed Hegar. Royce West’s endorsers include The Dallas Morning News (which endorsed him alongside Edwards), the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and 20 of his colleagues in the state legislature.

Incumbent John Cornyn (R) faces four challengers in the Republican primary. Two race-raters cal the general election Likely Republican and one rates it Solid Republican. No Democratic candidate has won a statewide election in Texas since 1994. Cornyn was last elected over David Alameel (D) by a margin of 61.6% to 34.4% in 2014.

Click here to learn more about the 2020 Texas United States Senate election’s March 3 Democratic primary

Additional reading:
Cristina Tzintzún Ramirez
Joaquin Castro 
U.S. Senate battlegrounds, 2020

Previewing the Republican primary for U.S. Senate in Alabama

The March 3 Republican primary for Senate in Alabama will decide who faces Doug Jones (D) in November. Donald Trump won Alabama by 28 percentage points in 2016. Jones won the 2017 special Senate election by 1.7 percentage points. The Republican primary features seven candidates, including several big names.

Former Sen. Jeff Sessions is seeking to win back the seat, from which he resigned in 2017 when President Trump appointed him U.S. attorney general. Roy Moore, the Republican nominee in the 2017 special election against Jones, is running again. U.S. Rep. Bradley Byrne, state Rep. Arnold Mooney, and former college football coach Tommy Tuberville are also in the race.

Two independent polls from early February showed Sessions and Tuberville leading, tied within margins of error, and Byrne in third. Sessions and Tuberville received around 30% support. To win the primary outright, a candidate needs a majority of the vote; otherwise, a runoff for the top two finishers will be held March 31.

Candidate messaging has largely focused on conservative credentials and who has been most supportive of President Donald Trump.

  • Byrne says he worked to end corruption in the state Department of Postsecondary Education and that his record as a U.S. House member demonstrates his support for the president.
  • Mooney describes himself as a conservative outsider, referring to his record in the state House and his years in the commercial real estate business.
  • Moore says he stood up for religious freedom on the Alabama Supreme Court and that allegations of sexual assault made against him ahead of the 2017 special election were false.
  • Sessions says he committed to the Trump agenda as a U.S. senator and in the Department of Justice.
  • Tuberville calls himself the outsider in the race who can stand with Trump.

Just over two weeks ahead of the primary, Byrne, Sessions, and Tuberville began releasing opposition ads criticizing one another over past conflicts with or comments about the president, among other issues.

  • Byrne and Tuberville criticized Sessions for recusing himself from the investigation into Russian interference with the 2016 presidential election during his time as attorney general. Sessions has defended his recusal and emphasized that he was the first senator to endorse Trump’s 2016 presidential bid.
  • Sessions and Tuberville criticized Byrne for saying that Trump was not fit to be president in 2016 following the release of the Access Hollywood recording. Byrne has said the comment was a mistake and that he worked to defend Trump against the impeachment effort in the House.
  • Byrne and Sessions ads said Tuberville supported amnesty for people in the country illegally. Sessions’ ads also featured audio of Tuberville criticizing Trump on veterans’ healthcare. Tuberville has said he does not support amnesty and that Trump has not been able to do everything he’d like due to resistance from others.

Republicans currently hold a majority in the U.S. Senate with 53 seats to Democrats’ 45. In addition, two independents caucus with Democrats. Alabama is one of two states, including Michigan, that Trump won in 2016 where Democrats are defending Senate seats. Republicans are defending seats in two states won by Hillary Clinton (D) in 2016: Colorado and Maine.

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Federal Register weekly update; 2020 page total exceeds 10,000 pages

The Federal Register is a daily journal of federal government activity that includes presidential documents, proposed and final rules, and public notices. It is a common measure of an administration’s regulatory activity.

From February 17 to February 21, the Federal Register grew by 1,552 pages for a year-to-date total of 10,268 pages. Over the same period in 2019 and 2018, the _Federal Register_ reached 5,950 pages and 8,164 pages, respectively. As of February 21, the 2020 total led the 2019 total by 4,318 pages and the 2018 total by 2,104 pages.

The Federal Register hit an all-time high of 95,894 pages in 2016.

This week’s Federal Register featured the following 539 documents:

  • 358 notices
  • three presidential documents
  • 41 proposed rules
  • 53 final rules

Two final rules and two proposed rules were deemed significant under E.O. 12866—meaning that they could have large impacts on the economy, environment, public health, or state or local governments. Significant actions may also conflict with presidential priorities or other agency rules. The Trump administration in 2020 has issued five significant proposed rules and 13 significant final rules as of February 21.

Not all rules issued by the Trump administration are regulatory actions. Some rules are deregulatory actions pursuant to President Trump’s (R) Executive Order 13771, which requires federal agencies to eliminate two old significant regulations for each new significant regulation issued.

Ballotpedia maintains page counts and other information about the Federal Register as part of its Administrative State Project. The project is a neutral, nonpartisan encyclopedic resource that defines and analyzes the administrative state, including its philosophical origins, legal and judicial precedents, and scholarly examinations of its consequences. The project also monitors and reports on measures of federal government activity.

Click here to find more information about weekly additions to the Federal Register in 2018 and 2017.

Click here to find yearly information about additions to the Federal Register from 1936 to 2016.

Filing deadline passes for special election in New York’s 27th Congressional District

Candidates interested in running in the special election for New York’s 27th Congressional District had until February 20, 2020, to file. The special general election is scheduled for April 28, 2020. Ballotpedia will provide a full candidate list once the state has released the official candidate filings.

The special election was called after Chris Collins (R) resigned on October 1, 2019, after pleading guilty to conspiracy and false statement charges. Collins served in the district from 2013 until his resignation.

As of February 20, 2020, nine special elections had been called during the 116th Congress. Seven of those were called for seats in the U.S. House, and two were called for seats in the U.S. Senate. From the 113th Congress to the 115th Congress, 40 special elections were held.

Entering the 2020 election, the U.S. House has 232 Democrats, 197 Republicans, one independent member, and five vacancies. All 435 seats are up for election. A majority in the chamber requires 218 seats.

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Previewing the Democratic primary for Senate in North Carolina

Five candidates are running in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate in North Carolina on March 3. Incumbent Sen. Thom Tillis (R) was elected in 2014, when he defeated then-incumbent Kay Hagan (D) 48.8% to 47.3%. Three ratings outlets rate the general election a Toss-up or Lean Republican.

Cal Cunningham and Erica Smith have led in Democratic primary endorsements, polls, and media attention. Cunningham is a member of the Army Reserves and a former state senator (2000-2002). Smith has been a state senator since 2015. She also served on Northampton County’s Board of Education and as chairwoman of the Northampton County Democratic Party.

Cunningham’s campaign messaging has focused on expanding Medicaid, lowering prescription drug costs, and eliminating corruption in Washington. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee endorsed him.

Smith says she has worked to bridge the rural-urban divide through economic partnerships with urban centers. She says her platform, which includes healthcare for all and a Green New Deal, would energize the base and young people to turn out in November.

Cunningham and Smith both said they would not accept money from corporate PACs. Cunningham ended 2019 having raised $3.3 million and with $1.7 million on hand. Smith raised $213,000 and had $95,000 on hand.

Through mid-February, satellite spending toward the race topped $13 million. VoteVets Action Fund had spent $7.4 million and Carolina Blue had spent $3.2 million on ads supporting Cunningham. Faith and Power PAC spent $2.9 million on ads and other activities supporting Smith. Media outlets wrote that the group had Republican connections, and Smith’s campaign disavowed the group.

Also running in the primary are Trevor Fuller, Atul Goel, and Steve Swenson.

A candidate needs more than 30 percent of the vote to win the primary outright. Otherwise, a runoff for the top two will be held May 12 if the second-place finisher requests one.

Cunningham led Smith 22% to 12% in a Public Policy Polling poll from January and 29% to 10% in a February poll from the same firm. Respectively, 60% and 52% of respondents were undecided.

Click here to read more.

Sanders wins Nevada caucuses

Sen. Bernie Sanders won the Nevada caucuses on Saturday afternoon, marking his third straight popular vote victory in the Democratic presidential primary. With 4% of precincts reporting, he had won 54% of the county convention delegates used to determine the number of pledged delegates allocated to each candidate.

Former Vice President Joe Biden followed with 18 percent of the county convention delegates. Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former Mayor Pete Buttigieg were in a close race for third with 10 percent and 9 percent, respectively.

The final delegate count is pending as a majority of precincts had not yet reported results as of 8:45 pm ET. The next Democratic presidential primary will be held in South Carolina on February 29, 2020.

On the Republican side, the Nevada Republican Party bound the state’s 25 delegates to President Donald Trump on Saturday at its winter meeting. The party voted to cancel its caucus last September.

Click here to learn more.