The Washington Post

Republicans hold massive fundraising advantage before elections

Republicans enjoy nearly a two-to-one advantage over Democrats in cash on hand as they look to take control of the state Senate and pick up seats in the House of Delegates, according to the Virginia Public Access Project, a nonpartisan tracker of money in politics.

Republicans have $13.8 million in the bank compared to Democrats’ $7.4 million, taking into account committees controlled by candidates, parties and leaders as of June 30, the day of the last reporting period.

That’s not surprising because it includes massive amounts of money raised by committees held by Republicans — the three statewide officeholders — Gov. Bob McDonnell, Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli , Speaker Bill Howell and other leaders in the GOP-controlled House. But Democrats still have an advantage in the Democratic-led Senate, where they had nearly $2 million in the bank in a pair of accounts controlled by the caucus and Majority Leader Richard Saslaw, according to VPAP.

McDonnell has more than twice as much money heading than his predecessor Tim Kaine (D) had at a similar point in his term.

McDonnell had $2.9 million as of June 30. Kaine had $1.3 million on June 30, 2007, the year Democrats took over the Senate.

Figures from the fundraising period were due Friday. The analysis was released Monday.

Republicans are in a fierce battle to take control of the Senate, where Democrats hold a fragile 22 to 18 majority, and pick up three to four additional seats in the House.

Already, Republicans have far outpaced Democrats in recruiting, though candidates have until Aug. 23 to file to run in the general election in November.

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