Donations to the Connecticut Senate race between incumbent Sen. Joe Lieberman and businessman Ned Lamont are coming in from all over the country. Literally.
Even by the end of June – the last contributions available in computerized form from the Federal Election Commission – Lieberman’s beleaguered reelection campaign had drawn donors from 44 states and Puerto Rico. Lamont’s money came from 27 states.
While Connecticut led the list for both candidates, it was a much more important source of funds for Lamont than for the incumbent. Between January 1, 2005 and June 30, 2006 Lieberman collected 75% of his individual contributions from outside Connecticut, while Lamont drew only 20% of his from outside the state. The totals include only contributions above $200. Smaller amounts are reported only in bulk and not itemized.
These totals do not include money raised during July and early August – the period when the race started to draw much more national attention. While I haven’t tried to total up the hand-written contributions filed by the campaigns in the last few days, it’s clear from glancing at Lieberman’s contributions that his strong reliance on out-of-state contributions is continuing.
I’d also bet that more of Lamont’s money is coming from out-of-state as well, though I haven’t checked his records. Most challengers aren’t well known outside their home states, and that was the case with Lamont before the race started drawing such heavy national attention in recent weeks.
Here are the leading states for both candidates during the 18 months ending at June 30:
1. Connecticut $1.4 million
2. New York $957,000
3. California $749,000
4. Florida $416,000
5. Illinois $234,000
1. Connecticut $475,000
2. New York $39,000
3. California $31,000
4. Massachusetts $15,000
5. Virginia $5,000