Billionaires, corporate money swing toward Democrats
7 November 2018
The 2018 midterms have been the most expensive congressional elections in US history, with an estimated $5.2 billion raised and spent by Election Day, according to data collected and reported by the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP). The total not only rose 35 percent over the previous midterm record in 2014, it exceeds the money spent on congressional races during the 2016 presidential election year.
Significantly, the Democratic Party and affiliated political action committees raked in the lion’s share of the record fundraising. Of the $4.7 billion spent by the latest reporting period, Democrats accounted for $2.5 billion, compared to $2.2 billion for Republican candidates and committees. Republicans have traditionally enjoyed a massive fundraising edge.
Democrats enjoyed a huge fundraising advantage in the contests for 435 seats in the House of Representatives, raising $951 million compared to $637 million for the Republicans, who held the majority of seats, 242 to 193. The Democratic advantage was particularly notable in the 29 seats considered “toss-ups,” where Democratic candidates raised an average of $5.5 million apiece, nearly twice the $3 million average for the Republicans.
Democrats also held the fundraising advantage in the Senate, $513 million to $361 million, but that was a smaller edge than in the House and actually represents a significant gain for the Republicans, since the Democrats had the advantage of incumbency in 26 of the 35 Senate seats that were at stake.
Overall, spending by the Democratic Party and associated groups was projected by the CRP to rise 44 percent over 2014, while the Republican Party and associated groups boosted their spending by only 21…