Arizona Democrat Mark Kelly is No. 1 in US in Senate fundraising
PHOENIX – Democrat Mark Kelly isn’t leading just Arizona’s 2020 Senate race in fundraising.
The former astronaut has raked in $20.2 million in the current cycle, more than any Senate candidate in the country, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, according to research released Tuesday by Phoenix-based polling firm OH Predictive Insights.
“An astonishing number for Mark Kelly, the amount of money raised and the amount of money he has on hand,” ABC News political correspondent Alex Castellanos told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Arizona’s Morning News.
Both of Arizona’s top candidates, Kelly and incumbent Republican Sen. Martha McSally, are in the national top 10 for Senate fundraising, which OH Predictive Insights compiled from Federal Elections Commission reports.
McSally was No. 6 with $12.6 million raised in the race to defend the seat she was appointed to following the 2018 death of Sen. John McCain.
Kelly has about $13.6 million cash on hand, a war chest McSally trails by about $6 million.
“And what does money do? Money can let you get on TV early and set the narrative for the race. … It lets you fight back against attacks later,” Castellanos said.
The fundraising for 2020 dwarfs the pace of the last Arizona Senate race, when Democrat Kyrsten Sinema defeated McSally in 2018.
“Right now, to put it in perspective, at this same point in time, Sinema had only $5 million cash on hand and McSally had yet to even declare her candidacy,” Mike Noble, chief of research and managing partner of OH Predictive Insights, told KTAR News.
McConnell, R-Kentucky, is No. 2 on the national Senate fundraising list with $18.1 million. His likely Democratic opponent, Amy McGrath, is next on the list with a healthy $17 million.
Sen. Gary Peters of Michigan, at No. 7 with $11.7 million, is the only incumbent Democrat among the top 10 in fundraising.
KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Jeremy Foster contributed to this report.