The Washington Post

Political parties bankroll big chunks of some Virginia Senate races

If Virginia state Sen. William M. Stanley Jr. doesn’t prevail on Election Day, he can’t blame a lack of support from the state GOP.

Stanley got a whopping 93 percent of his campaign cash last month — $215,799 of the $231,999 he collected in all — from Republican party committees.

That’s according to an analysis by the Virginia Public Access Project, a nonpartisan tracker of money in politics.

VPAP looked at how heavily or not Republican and Democratic candidates for Senate were relying on party money as they battle for control of the General Assembly’s upper chamber.

VPAP found that in September, four Republican candidates got nearly all of their money from party sources: Stanley (Southside); David A. Nutter (Southwest); Thomas Harmon (Hampton) and Tom Garrett (Lynchburg).

Nutter, Harmon and Garrett got about three of every four dollars from party committees. The actual dollar amounts each received varied widely, but for all three, the donations represented about 75 percent of their overall September fundraising. Nutter received $113,000 from party committees, Garrett got $61,790, and Harmon took in $9,450.

Four Senate Democrats, all incumbents, also relied on party committees for big chunks of their September fundraising hauls.

The party help accounted for 69 percent of the September take for John C. Miller (Newport News); 54 percent for William Roscoe Reynolds (Martinsville); 53 percent John S. Edwards (Roanoke); and 46 percent R. Edward Houck (Spotsylvania). In dollar terms, the party donations amounted to $106,700 for Miller; $74,500 for Reynolds, $65,850 for Edwards, and $80,500 for Houck.

There’s more on how money is flowing in Virginia Senate races in today’s Post.

Laura Vozzella covers Virginia politics for The Washington Post.



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