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Blue wave? Dem candidates raise millions in battle for House

Blue wave? Dem candidates raise millions in battle for House
© The Hill

Democratic House candidates are raking in millions of dollars in the final fundraising quarter before the midterms in November, continuing their strong fundraising streak in the high-stakes battle for the House.

A handful of candidates running in this cycle’s most competitive House races are pulling in seven-figure hauls in the third fundraising quarter of 2018, which runs from July to September, according to fundraising numbers campaigns have released so far.

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Those figures are on par with Senate candidates' fundraising for a statewide race.

Two Democrats — Amy McGrath in Kentucky and Josh Harder in California — have raised more than $3 million each, which are eye-popping fundraising numbers for House candidates.

McGrath, who’s running in a hotly contested race against Rep. Andy BarrAndy BarrHouse Republicans who didn't sign onto the Texas lawsuit OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Energy issues rule allowing companies to develop own efficiency tests for products | GOP lawmakers push back on Federal Reserve's climate risk efforts GOP lawmakers push back on Federal Reserve's climate risk efforts MORE (R-Ky.), raised $3.65 million in the third quarter, ending September with $1.7 million in the bank.

President TrumpDonald TrumpClinton, Bush, Obama reflect on peaceful transition of power on Biden's Inauguration Day Arizona Republican's brothers say he is 'at least partially to blame' for Capitol violence Biden reverses Trump's freeze on .4 billion in funds MORE easily won the district by double-digits in 2016, but the race for Kentucky’s 6th District has emerged as a top race as Democrats seek to flip 23 seats to gain a majority in the House.

And in California, Harder, who’s challenging Rep. Jeff DenhamJeffrey (Jeff) John DenhamBusiness groups breathe sigh of relief over prospect of divided government Ex-RNC, Trump fundraiser Elliott Broidy charged in covert lobbying scheme Bottom line MORE (R-Calif.) in a district that Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBiden's inauguration marked by conflict of hope and fear Schumer becomes new Senate majority leader Clinton says it meant 'great deal' to hold inauguration weeks after riot MORE won in 2016, similarly raised $3.5 million in the third quarter.

Those two House candidates have raised more than a majority of Senate candidates running in this cycle’s most competitive races.

In the second fundraising quarter of 2018, only five Senate candidates or incumbents running in the 14 marquee Senate races this cycle raised more than Harder's or McGrath’s $3.5 million hauls.

Other House Democrats have pulled in fundraising totals that have exceeded $1 million in the third fundraising quarter, and at least a few candidates brought in more than $2 million.

Democrat Sean Casten, who’s running against Rep. Peter Roskam Peter James RoskamPostcards become unlikely tool in effort to oust Trump Bottom line Lobbying world MORE (R-Ill.), pulled in $2.6 million in the third quarter, while Democrat Sharice Davids raised $2.7 million in Kansas.

Davids, who’s running against Rep. Kevin YoderKevin Wayne YoderBottom line Amanda Adkins wins GOP primary to challenge Rep. Sharice Davids Sharice Davids to vote for Trump impeachment articles: 'The facts are uncontested' MORE (R-Kan.), would be the first Native American woman elected to Congress if she wins in November. Both districts were carried by Clinton.

A handful of other Democratic candidates also raised more than $1.5 million in the third quarter, including Dana Balter in New York, Betsy Dirksen Londrigan in Illinois and Aftab Pureval in Ohio.

Democratic House candidates have repeatedly dominated fundraising this cycle in a year that many speculate could be building into a blue wave.

In the second fundraising quarter of 2018, more than 50 Democratic candidates outraised House GOP incumbents, and 21 Democrats raised more than $1 million each between April and June.

Still, even with Democratic candidates’ massive hauls, Republican outside groups have been able to counter with their own high-dollar fundraising and have been flooding the airwaves with ads.

Congressional Leadership Fund, the super PAC aligned with Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanBiden's inauguration marked by conflict of hope and fear The Hill's 12:30 Report: Sights and sounds from Inauguration Day Revising the pardon power — let the Speaker and Congress have voices MORE (R-Wis.), is planning to spend $100 million in the battle for the House, with advertisements and field offices in dozens of competitive districts as they seek to protect the GOP’s House majority.