Once-wary potential candidates are preparing to come off the sidelines, according to party recruiters, and the GOP’s small-dollar donor base is stepping up to help the party compete against Democrats who are practically awash in money, according to nearly a dozen interviews with Republican Party officials and some prospective contenders themselves.

Story Continued Below

“It certainly sparks something in you when you see this bombardment against our president,” said Dale Crafts, a former state representative and paraplegic businessman who plans to launch a run this week against Democratic Rep. Jared Golden of Maine.

Seizing on impeachment and seeking to protect President Donald Trump, GOP outside groups over the past week have launched a seven-figure TV ad blitz in targeted districts and rolled out fundraising initiatives to help bankroll the eventual Republican nominee in some 20 Trump-won seats. They’re also cranking up efforts aimed at building donor lists.