Conservative groups have spent more than $5 million to try to unseat Thad Cochran

As we wait for returns to come in Tuesday evening in the Republican primary for U.S. Senate in Mississippi, here's a data point to chew on: Outside groups have spent a whopping $8 million in the campaign. That's about double what both the candidates spent. Yes, combined.

Most of the money went toward backing state Sen. Chris McDaniel over incumbent U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran. According to a Sunlight Foundation tally of spending on the race that must be reported to the Federal Election Commission, third-party groups spent nearly $5.3 million on behalf of the tea party challenger. Cochran's allies spent nearly $2.8 million.


(Data via Sunlight Foundation)

When it came to candidate spending, McDaniel was no match for Cochran. The incumbent spent about $3 million, compared to $1 million for McDaniel.

The biggest spender overall was the Club for Growth, an anti-tax group that backed McDaniel from the outset of his campaign. The Club spent about $2.5 million.

The biggest pro-Cochran spender was Mississippi Conservatives. The super PAC designed specifically to help the senator dished out nearly $1.7 million on the campaign.

Polls showed a razor-tight race between Cochran and McDaniel headed into the day. It's also possible that we won't know the winner by this time Wednesday. With a third candidate in the race, Cochran and McDaniel could each fall short of winning a majority, thereby triggering a runoff later this month.

So, this might not be the end of the spending barrage.

Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.

politics

post-politics

Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Comments
Show Comments
Most Read Politics

politics

post-politics

Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Next Story
Paul Kane · June 3, 2014

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.