Democratic challenger to McConnell raises $2.5 million on first day of campaign

Amy McGrath, a Democratic challenger for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGrassley, Wyden reach deal to lower drug prices The Hill's Morning Report — Trump applauds two-year budget deal with 0 billion spending hike Harris, Nadler introduce bill to decriminalize marijuana MORE's (R-Ky.) seat in 2020, raised $2.5 million on the first day of her campaign.

McGrath's campaign told NBC News that more than $1 million came in in the first 5 1/2 hours after the campaign launched on Tuesday.

McGrath campaign manager Mark Nickolas told NBC News that the $2.5 million haul came from online donations, with the average contribution being $36.15. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Nickolas said that the amount raised was the largest for the first 24 hours of a Senate campaign. 

McGrath, who previously lost a congressional a bid in 2018, announced her candidacy for the Senate in a three-minute campaign video. 

She was one of the most closely watched Democratic House contenders in the 2018 midterm elections, narrowly losing her race to incumbent Rep. Andy Barr (R) in Kentucky's 6th Congressional District.

The fundraising haul comes on the heels of a series of strong second-quarter fundraising numbers from Democrats looking to unseat incumbent Senate Republicans. 

Sen. Susan Collins's (R-Maine) challenger, state Speaker Sara Gideon (D), raised more than $1 million in the first week of her campaign, while Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) Democratic challenger, Jaime Harrison, brought in $1.5 million since launching his campaign just a month ago. 

Democrat Mark Kelly, who is running to unseat Sen. Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallyThe Hill's Morning Report — Trump applauds two-year budget deal with 0 billion spending hike Trump angry more Republicans haven't defended his tweets: report Republicans scramble to contain Trump fallout MORE (R-Ariz.), raised $4.2 million in the second quarter, outpacing his first-quarter haul. 

McConnell is set on maintaining his party's control of the chamber, in which they have a 53-47 majority.

He won easily won reelection to his sixth term in 2014 by nearly 16 points.