NC Democrats an­nounce record amount of cash ahead of midterm elec­tions

The Charlotte Observer (Sunday) - - Stay Connected - BY PAUL A. SPECHT as­[email protected]­sob­server.com

Repub­li­cans con­trol the North Carolina leg­is­la­ture, but Democrats have a record amount of cash to help their can­di­dates gain power this fall.

The N.C. Demo­cratic Party on Thurs­day an­nounced it has $5.8 mil­lion to help state House and state Se­nate can­di­dates this fall. That fig­ure sets a record for the party’s fundrais­ing at this point in a midterm elec­tion year.

By con­trast, the N.C. Repub­li­can Party re­ported hav­ing $1.3 mil­lion on hand. The party’s top elected of­fi­cials are ex­pected to pro­vide fi­nan­cial sup­port to Repub­li­can can­di­dates. Se­nate leader Phil Berger has $1.6 mil­lion on hand.

The Demo­cratic Party says it has seven times more than it had by the same time in the 2014 elec­tion ($800,266) and 22 times more than the amount it had by the same time in 2010 ($252,467).

The party raised a record $2.3 mil­lion dur­ing this year’s sec­ond-quar­ter cam­paign pe­riod.

Wayne Good­win, the state party chair­man, said the num­bers are ev­i­dence that mo­men­tum is on the Democrats’ side.

“Democrats across the state are out­work­ing, out­hus­tling, and out­rais­ing Repub­li­cans, show­ing that the grass­roots en­ergy and mo­men­tum are on our side and many Repub­li­cans are go­ing to be caught flat-footed in Novem­ber,” Good­win said in a state­ment.

“The party is in the strong­est po­si­tion we have ever been in be­fore a midterm elec­tion, with out­stand­ing Democrats run­ning in ev­ery sin­gle district for the first time ever and the re­sources and sup­port they need to get their mes­sage out,” he said.

Democrats con­trolled state pol­i­tics for more than 100 years un­til Repub­li­cans seized con­trol ear­lier this decade. They’ve since cut tax rates and reg­u­la­tions while also tak­ing con­tro­ver­sial stances on so­cial is­sues like same-sex mar­riage and bath­room ac­cess for trans­gen­der peo­ple.

This fall, ev­ery seat in the N.C. Gen­eral As­sem­bly is up for elec­tion. If Democrats pick up ei­ther four House seats or six Se­nate seats in the Novem­ber elec­tion, they’ll break the Repub­li­can su­per­ma­jor­ity – mean­ing Repub­li­cans will be less likely to over­ride the ve­toes of Demo­cratic Gov. Roy Cooper.

Repub­li­cans in ur­ban and subur­ban ar­eas are the most vul­ner­a­ble, ex­perts say. But Democrats said ear­lier this year they plan to tar­get Repub­li­cans from ru­ral ar­eas, too.

Democrats credit Break the Ma­jor­ity, a part­ner­ship be­tween Cooper and the party, for the fundrais­ing suc­cess.

The party is en­cour­aged by the ef­forts of in­di­vid­ual can­di­dates as well. It says 30 Democrats raised more than their Repub­li­can op­po­nents dur­ing the first cam­paign­ing pe­riod this year.

It’s un­clear ex­actly how each race is stack­ing up in terms of fundrais­ing.

Can­di­dates were re­quired to sub­mit up­dated cam­paign fi­nance re­ports to the N.C. Board of Elec­tions and Ethics En­force­ment by Wed­nes­day. By Thurs­day af­ter­noon, some re­ports had not been pro­cessed and up­loaded to the board’s web­site.

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