The fundraising leaders in the U.S. Senate and Southern Arizona Congressional races share one thing in common — they are heavily backed by political action committees.
In the U.S. Senate race, about 13 percent of the money brought in by Republican Jeff Flake and Democrat Richard Carmona have come in the category the Federal Election Commission calls 'other political committees,' which is mostly PACs. Republican Wil Cardon has not raised any money from PACs, instead mostly using his own money.
In the Congressional District 3 race, Democrat Raúl Grijalva leads his challengers by a wide margin thanks to $231,000 from PACs, which account for 40 percent of the money he’s raised.
In the Congressional District 2 race, Democrat Ron Barber has raised $431,000 from PACs including what he raised in the CD8 special election campaign. That total represents 28 percent of the total funds he’s brought in. His Republican challenger, Martha McSally, has raised $44,000 from PACs, which accounts for 11 percent of her campaign funds. That total includes her fund-raising from the CD8 special election.
In the Congressional District 1 race, fundraising leader Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick has raised $315,500 from PACs, about 23 percent of her total funds. Her likely Republican opponent in the general election, Jonathan Paton, has raised just $25,000 from PACs, which is about 4 percent of his coffers.
Here’s a complete breakdown of how much money the candidates have raised since they began campaigning, and how much of that is from 'other political committees,' which is mostly PACs:
Candidate, total money raised from outside sources (from PACs)
• Jeff Flake (R) — $4.8 million ($642,300)
Notable PACs: Alliance Coal, Coal, Defend America, KochPAC, Exxon Mobil, LincolnPAC, ProsperityPAC, Arizona Dairymen, American Bankers Assoc., Bluegrass Committee, Common Values.
• Richard Carmona (D) — $2.4 million ($308,900)
Notable PACs: Prairie, Committee for Hispanic Causes, DanPAC, Forward Together, International Association of Firefighters, Midwest Values, PAC for a Change, A New Direction PAC, Searchlight Leadership Fund.
• Wil Cardon (R) — $802,500 ($0)
• Bryan Hackbarth (R) — $26,800 ($0)
• Clair Van Steenwyk (R) — $0 ($0)
Note: Notables include PACs who donated to the candidate prior to April 1 because the updated list for the second quarter of 2012 is not yet available.
• Raúl Grijalva (D) — $574,500 ($231,000)
Notable PACs: American Federation of Teachers, Committee for Hispanic Causes-BOLD PAC, Committee for Progressive Congress, Machinists non-partisan Political League, AFL-CIO, Arizona Dairymen, Democracy for America, Sierra Club, National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, Anhueuser-Busch, American Association for Justice.
• Gabriela Saucedo Mercer (R) — $151,400 ($6,000)
Notable PACs: Phoenix Law Enforcement Association, Maggie’s List.
• Amanda Aguirre (D) — $104,000 ($5,000)
Notable PACs: Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Croplife America, Healthy Government Committee, Optometric, Republic Services Inc.
• Manny Arreguin (D) — $48,065 ($0)
• Jaime Vasquez (R) — $0 ($0)
• Ron Barber (D) — $1.5 million ($431,150)
Notable PACs: AmericPac: the Fund for a Greater America, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, American Postal Workers, International Association of Firefighters, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO Committee on Political Education, PAC to the Future, American Defense and Military, Raytheon Company, Planned Parenthood, Honeywell International, Employees of Northrop Grumman, Solar Energy Industries.
• Martha McSally (R) — $404,500 ($44,300)
Notable PACs: Senate Majority, Committee for the Preservation of Capitalism, Value in Electing Women, YoPAC, Wild and Wonderful.
• Matt Heinz (D) — $135,785 ($0)
• Mark Koskiniemi (R) – Less than $5,000 ($0)
• Ann Kirkpatrick (D) — $1.3 million ($325,500)
Notable PACs: Emily’s List Conduit Committee, PAC to the Future, New Democrat Coalition, Engineers PAC, American Federation of Teachers, American Association of Justice, American Crystal Sugar PAC, National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, Nancy Pelosi for Congress, Debbie Wasserman Schultz for Congress.
• Jonathan Paton (R) — $558,900 ($25,000)
Notable PACs: Senate Majority Fund, Jeb PAC, Outdoor Advertising, Pharmaceutical Care Management Association, Services Group of America, National Cattlemens Beef Association.
• Martin Gaither (R) — $101,000 ($0)
• Wenona Benally Baldenegro (D) — $94,500 ($2,190)
• Douglas Wade (R) — $43,500 ($0)
• Patrick Gatti (R) — $0 ($0)
Stay tuned to the Pueblo Politics blog throughout 2012 for news, updates and information about Arizona politics. You can follow Arizona Daily Star reporters Brady McCombs and Becky Pallack on Twitter.