O’Donnell ended campaign with almost $1 million in treasury

posted at 9:02 pm on December 3, 2010 by Allahpundit

Commenters in the Headlines thread are grumbling about this, no doubt remembering that (a) she’s been accused before by former aides of using campaign donations for personal expenses and (b) she did plenty of grumbling herself a few weeks before the election that the NRSC wasn’t spending enough to help her. Why didn’t she spend more to beat Coons?

Well, for one thing, she did spend a ton. The Politico story neglects to mention it but the $6.1 million she plowed into the race shattered the state record for expenditures on a Senate campaign by more than a million dollars and doubled the amount Coons spent. It’s not like she was holding back to maximize the leftover amount for her to live on after the election. Besides, there were other considerations to think about, which the Politico story does note:

O’Donnell spokesman Matthew Moran said O’Donnell was advised by her attorney to reserve “several hundred thousand dollars” for after Election Day to use for legal challenges resulting from her campaign — such as a complaint filed with the Federal Election Commission filed by the state GOP during the primary and a criminal complaint filed with the U.S. attorney’s office in Delaware by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

The campaign was also holding on to money for “the inevitable FEC wrap-ups because we had so many small donors, etc.” that ongoing legal actions could drag on for “years,” Moran wrote in an e-mail to POLITICO. “Lastly, much of that money came in so late that we could not spend it effectively and would not recklessly put the campaign into debt … obviously, all checks that came in dated after the election were returned by Friends of Christine O’Donnell.”

O’Donnell’s FEC report shows that $1,966 in contributions came in to her campaign after Election Day.

I’m eager to hear from political consultants on this as I honestly have no idea whether this sounds plausible, implausible, or somewhere in between. A Twitter pal of mine, who’s a consultant himself but no fan of O’Donnell’s, insists that it’s not the hard number that’s important but the ratio between the money left over and the total amount raised. Twenty percent would be an unusual figure, he claims, but O’Donnell’s ratio isn’t that high — just shy of 13 percent, in fact. Given the legal challenges she’s facing, is that really so preposterous an amount? Besides, she doesn’t need the campaign money to live on: She just landed a deal to write a book which she hopes will, er, be “one of the [conservative] revolution’s catalysts.”

Here’s video of her appearance on GMA from a few days ago, in which she famously encouraged Hillary Clinton to challenge Obama. Sounds … unlikely. Exit question: Could the NRSC really have helped her? She spent a bundle and still lost by 16 points; meanwhile, the NRSC dumped millions on Carly Fiorina in California and lost there anyway. Some red candidates in deep blue states just aren’t going to win.


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Comment pages: 1 2

There is nothing unusual about having campaign funds in reserve, but it is unusual for the MSM to use the fact to trash people … but then it is O’Donnell and we all knoow how Rove and the press treated her.

Done That on December 4, 2010 at 5:44 AM

The Progressive media really hates Republican woman with some sort of sick and twisted passion. These creatures also seem to hate any woman who happens to be cute, no matter the political background. However, cute and Republican just drives a stake through their hearts. It does blow my mind though how these so called journalists lie so easily without any form of shame.

Keemo on December 4, 2010 at 7:55 AM

These creatures also seem to hate any woman who happens to be cute, no matter the political background

Oh come on. There is Hillary, Helen Thomas, Nancy Pelosi, Susan Estrich, Michelle O, Sonya Sotomayor …..oh wait a minute. Forget it.

CWforFreedom on December 4, 2010 at 8:48 AM

Can’t spend campaign cash if the TV station forgets to run the ads. There was a concerted effort by the media and the Washington establishment to do her in, and it worked. Ridicule is a great way to down grade a candidate.

Kissmygrits on December 4, 2010 at 9:01 AM

She’s starting a PAC with some of the reserves as well. I had a long conversation with her last night at an event I attended.

xler8bmw on December 4, 2010 at 9:13 AM

It I remember correctly Sec. Clinton has quite the war chest that no one is the least bit interested in. Except Dems she might want to support at a later date.

Cindy Munford on December 4, 2010 at 9:33 AM

Yes, it would have been another story, and well it should have been.

Spend the money you need, but don’t spend more than you have.

It’s not a difficult concept is it?

Countless candidates manage it. Outside the world of politics millions of businesses, families, etc., do the same.

It’s called “having a budget”.

But apparently it was foreign concept for Christine O’Donnell, and her campaign.

Dreadnought on December 4, 2010 at 1:21 AM
Uh, I think the story is that O’Donnell’s campaign ended up with a million-dollar surplus. Which would entail NOT spending money you don’t have. So it must not have been that foreign a concept.

ddrintn on December 4, 2010 at 1:37 AM

The second part is “spend the money you need”, that’s part of budgeting too. O’Donnell was continually complaining she didn’t have enough money, yet ends up with a 1 Mil surplus, right?

Dreadnought on December 4, 2010 at 9:41 AM

O’Donnell ended campaign with almost $1 million in treasury

Hope paid the bill and told the cashier to keep the change.

rukiddingme on December 4, 2010 at 11:09 AM

If she was a Democrat, no one would report this except on Page 56. She was wise to hang on to some of the money after she realized she was fighting two political parties at once. She’ll have some little tosser or other suing her for years.

SurferDoc on December 4, 2010 at 11:36 AM

It’s not like she can spend on herself. She can give to another campaign. Maybe she should give it the NRSC? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

Cindy Munford on December 4, 2010 at 11:53 AM

It I remember correctly Sec. Clinton has quite the war chest that no one is the least bit interested in. Except Dems she might want to support at a later date.

Cindy Munford on December 4, 2010 at 9:33 AM

I think she had a war chest…and unpaid bills that she solicited to have paid and was by the DNC.
Pretty sure most all major candidates end up with a few pennies in their pocket.

right2bright on December 4, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Just as I predicted.

Sure it’s “normal” for a winning campaign to end up with plenty of money left over – not so much a campaign which lost badly AND poor-mouthed the party for not sending more.

Do all her apologists understand that she can now pay herself a salary out of the leftover funds, and live off of that legally? You can bet your cute little witch knew about it, and was probably monitoring the spending very closely throughout the campaign to make sure she doesn’t have to look for a job.

As promised, I will never let the losers who wasted time and money on this clownette forget how dumb they were. OR how hypocritical – how many of you blasted Murkowski for running as a write-in after losing the party primary? Did you not know that O’Donnell did EXACTLY the same thing in 2008? Didn’t seem to bother you suckers, though . . .

Adjoran on December 4, 2010 at 12:42 PM

For the Nth time, there’s nothing at all wrong with using campaign donation funds for personal living expenses. If that wasn’t allowed, only wealthy people would be able to run for office. Perhaps that’s what the elitists would prefer?

slickwillie2001 on December 4, 2010 at 12:58 PM

slickwillie2001 on December 4, 2010 at 12:58 PM

I think you have that backwards. By keeping the coffers full it only allows wealthy to run for office. Believe me I know first hand trying to raise money against an incumbent with millions in his coffer when I ran for congress. I think we need drastic political contribution reform so that the least wealthy can run a fair campaign.

xler8bmw on December 4, 2010 at 2:17 PM

Christine O’Donnell hurt Toomey… you’re an idiot if you don’t think so. She hurt a lot of people.
So by that logic, Whitman and Fiorina hurt Rossi and Buck.

ddrintn on December 4, 2010 at 1:59 AM

Uh, no, because you see Fiorina and Whitman didn’t come across to the general public as idiots, like O’Donnell did.

Dreadnought on December 4, 2010 at 2:23 PM

It’s not like she can spend on herself. She can give to another campaign. Maybe she should give it the NRSC? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

Cindy Munford on December 4, 2010 at 11:53 AM

More likely is she would give a good chunk of it to the Palin campaign just as I plan on doing. :P

DannoJyd on December 4, 2010 at 2:25 PM

Answer: she could have had an extra $10 Million, and it wouldn’t have helped.

COD is a good conservative, a great woman, but not a great candidate. And in a Blue State like DE, she’s going to need help, even with Harry Reid doing all he could to help out.

Nethicus on December 4, 2010 at 4:11 PM

It’s not like she can spend on herself. She can give to another campaign. Maybe she should give it the NRSC? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

Cindy Munford on December 4, 2010 at 11:53 AM

+1…

Khun Joe on December 5, 2010 at 10:12 AM

It I remember correctly Sec. Clinton has quite the war chest that no one is the least bit interested in. Except Dems she might want to support at a later date.

Cindy Munford on December 4, 2010 at 9:33 AM

You mean the former New York, carpet bagger senator Hillary Clinton who repeatedly said she would not seek a higher office while serving her term as senator?

dthorny on December 5, 2010 at 12:20 PM

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