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April 16, 2007

Reichert campaign still in debt, despite massive GOP effort

Posted by David Postman at 1:32 PM

Congressman Dave Reichert raised $184,722 in the first quarter of 2007. But he has already spent $153,975 of that and his campaign account remains $58,000 in debt. That's according to reports the campaign filed with the Federal Election Commission.

You can see details of his donations here.

Democrat Darcy Burner, who ran a close race against Reichert last year and says she will challenge him again in 2008, filed reports showing she raised $19,368 in the first quarter and has spent $16,102. Details of her contributions are here.

The Swing State Project is doing a pretty thorough job of tracking congressional money.

We all know that the 8th District race between Reichert and Burner was one of the most competitive in the country. But what I didn't know — until someone pointed me today to a PowerPoint presentation given by a Karl Rove deputy — is just how much the Republican Party did to flood the district with its get-out-the-vote effort. The 8th is the top example in a chart on page 20 of the presentation given in January by Rove deputy Scott Jennings. (Click on the graphic on the right to see it in full size.)

In the 8th, a total of 585,164 GOP voter contacts were made through the campaign — 41,666 on election day alone. The total is more than 100,000 above the next closest district.

The PowerPoint was released by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform last month. The presentation was given to General Services Administration personnel. At a March congressional hearing, GSA Chief Lurita Doan was questioned about why the federal government's purchasing agency needed to have a political briefing. She told Rep. Bruce Braley, D-Iowa, she couldn't remember much about the event. In particular, Braley wanted to know about a slide that listed Rove's top 20 targets among House Democrats. Via NPR:

Doan: "I don't know what the explanation was that accompanied this. I truly do not remember this part of the presentation."

Braley: "Well, you're familiar with what the word 'target' means, right?"

Doan: "I think we could say that I'm one right now. "

NOTE: My headline on this doesn't make a lot of sense. The campaign debt doesn't anything to do with the national Republican GOTV effort. My point as I wrote it was that even though the race was obviously a top priority for national Republicans, Reichert remains in debt. But a big GOTV effort in the 8th did not mean a bunch of cash going into the race.

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