Saturday, October 16, 2010
Interest Group Spending on Campaigns Setting Records in 2010
The money flowing into campaigns to buy TV ads and send brochures to your mailbox is staggering.
And as David Corn notes elsewhere, we may never know where much of this money comes from or exactly how much is spent. That's because of the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision earlier this year, which allows corporations to spend unlimited amounts on election activities, and IRS rules that allow that money to flow through nonprofits that don't have to release their donors' names.
Using a spreadsheet downloaded from the Federal Election Commission and reports from the Wesleyan Media Project, which tracks and analyzes television advertising in federal elections, we crunched some numbers.
As of Friday morning, with 18 days to go to Nov. 2, here's how the spending shakes out:
$1.2 billion: Raised by House and Senate candidates, according to the FEC.
$879 million: Spent by House and Senate candidates, according to the FEC.
$200 million: Spent on television ads between Sept. 1 and Oct. 7, according to the Wesleyan Media Project.
$151 million: Spent by outside groups trying to influence the general election, according to FEC records.
$41.7 million: Spent by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee for the general election.
$27.4 million: Spent by the National Republican Congressional Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee for the general election.
$18.3 million: Spent by outside groups on the U.S. Senate race and three congressional races in Colorado.