Campaign

Democratic incumbents bolster fundraising advantage in key Senate races

Democratic senators waging tight reelection bids saw a windfall in fundraising in the third quarter of 2021, beefing up their campaign bank accounts ahead of what are expected to be brutal fights to retain their seats.

Democratic incumbents in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada and New Hampshire raised millions more than their top GOP opponents, according to Federal Election Commission reports filed Friday, establishing a cash advantage that will likely be key between now and next November. 

Arizona Sen. Mark Kelly (D), known for consistently raking in large fundraising hauls, took in more than $8.1 million, finishing the first quarter with just more than $13 million cash on hand. His two biggest Republican rivals, Thiel Foundation President Blake Masters and state Attorney General Mark Brnovich, raised $1 million and more than $560,000, respectively.

In Georgia, Sen. Raphael Warnock (D) took in one of the biggest hauls of the quarter with $9.5 million, finishing September with more than $17.2 million in the bank. That far outpaces his top rival on the GOP side, former football star Herschel Walker, who raised more than $3.7 million and entered October with just shy of $2.5 million cash on hand.

Nevada Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D) brought in $3.2 million in the third quarter and had $8.3 million in the bank. In the GOP primary, former state Attorney General Adam Laxalt, who entered the race in mid-August, raised $1.4 million in six weeks, while veteran Sam Brown took in $1 million.

And in New Hampshire, Sen. Maggie Hassan (D) raised nearly $3 million and finished September with almost $6.5 million in the bank. Republican Don Bolduc raised shy of $60,000, but Republicans are hoping to push Gov. Chris Sununu (R) into the race. 

Those four races will be key to determining which party controls the Senate, which is currently divided at 50-50. 

President Biden won all four states but was the first Democratic presidential nominee to do so in Arizona and Georgia since former President Clinton. 

Democrats are also looking to go on offense in states such as North Carolina and Pennsylvania, where Sens. Richard Burr (R) and Pat Toomey (R) are retiring, and in Wisconsin, where Sen. Ron Johnson (R) has yet to announce if he'll run for reelection.

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