GOP Senate campaign arm says it raised $8.3 million in January

GOP Senate campaign arm says it raised $8.3 million in January
© Greg Nash

The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) pulled in more than $8.3 million in January, even amid concerns that efforts by some GOP lawmakers to block the certification of the Electoral College vote would scare off donors. 

Most of the group’s January fundraising total – $6.8 million – flowed in after Republicans suffered a pair of catastrophic losses in two runoff Senate elections in Georgia. Those defeats effectively handed control of the upper chamber to the Democrats. 

Money also poured into the GOP’s Senate campaign arm as the party and several of its elected officials faced an onslaught of criticism in the wake of the Jan. 6 riots at the Capitol, during which a mob of former President TrumpDonald TrumpNew Capitol Police chief to take over Friday Overnight Health Care: Biden officials says no change to masking guidance right now | Missouri Supreme Court rules in favor of Medicaid expansion | Mississippi's attorney general asks Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade Michael Wolff and the art of monetizing gossip MORE’s supporters stormed the halls of Congress in an effort to disrupt the certification of the Electoral College vote.

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Despite the attack, 147 Republican lawmakers, including NRSC Chairman Rick Scott (R-Fla.), eventually voted against certifying the election results from some states. 

Those objections prompted dozens of influential donors and corporate political action committees to suspend contributions to Republicans who challenged the Electoral College vote.

But the NRSC’s January haul suggests that the blowback from the Jan. 6 riots and Electoral College certification had little practical effect on the committee’s fundraising efforts.

The $8.3 million raised by the NRSC last month surpassed its $5.5 million fundraising total in January 2019. The group said that it ended the month with $17.2 million in cash on hand, more than twice as much as the $7.6 million it had in the bank two years ago.

More than half of the $8.3 million raised by the committee came from online contributions, the NRSC said. All told, the group said that it raised more than $100,000 a day last month. 

The NRSC hasn’t formally filed its January financial report with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) yet. Its Democratic counterpart, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, hasn’t disclosed its fundraising figures for January. 

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Republicans are gearing up for an effort to recapture control of the Senate in 2022, when they will have a chance to win back recently flipped seats in Georgia and Arizona.

But despite those targets, the GOP still faces a difficult electoral map. The party is defending 20 Senate seats to Democrats’ 14, including several in expectedly competitive states like North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. 

At the same time, a handful of GOP senators have announced plans to retire after 2022, raising the prospect that Republicans may have to face bruising and expensive primary fights in several must-win states. 

Still, with Democrats now in control of the White House and both chambers of Congress, Republicans are hoping that the political landscape will shift in their favor next year.