Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) has raised more than $2 million for his re-election campaign with more than 1 1/2 years go to before the 2010 election, a whopping total that could serve to scare off any serious challengers.
In his first campaign finance report for Fenty 2010, the mayor showed that he's applied the lessons from his formidable 2006 effort to his re-election bid: start early and get out on the trail often. The mayor has held a number of fundraisers, including a massive birthday party in December at the home of a developer and an event at Georgia Brown's restaurant last week, the same day as he lunched with Michelle Obama there.
In 2006, Fenty raised a total of $3.8 million, besting his top competitor, former D.C. Council Chairman Linda W. Cropp and setting an all-time record for a mayoral race in the city. He bought a number of television ads and had so much money coming in that he had to return $45,000.
Fenty's campaign fund-raising effort is being spear-headed by John Falcicchio, who has been with Fenty since the first mayoral campaign and is known as "Johnny Business" for his dedication to the job. Though D.C. Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) and council member Kwame R. Brown (D-At Large) are often rumored to be interested in challenging Fenty, both have said they are content in their current jobs and have denied thinking about running this go-round.
Fenty lists 2,126 contributors, with many giving the maximum $2,000. Among the big names are developers from Akridge Co. and William C. Smith, executives from Pepco and Marriott, lawyers from Holland and Knight and Arent Fox, employees of LSG Strategies (the political campaign consulting firm owned by Fenty campaign manager Tom Lindenfeld), Nationals owner Ted Lerner and his family (which gave $16,000 all told), D.C. Chief Technology Officer Vivek Kundra ($1,000), all sorts of developers, real estate companies and construction companies, and D.C. Council member Muriel Bowser ($500).
But D.C.'s newest big-name resident -- Barack Obama -- isn't found on the list even though Fenty had endorsed him two years ago. Of course, there's still plenty of time to donate.