On Monday, the Democratic Governors Association announced that it raised more than $100 million for the 2018 midterm cycle, with around $22.2 million of it came in September.
“This is a reflection of what I call the ‘great awakening’ of the Democratic family,” said Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington. “If we’re going to have a shot at the pathology of gerrymandering, we’ve got to win governors’ races. And this is the only place where we can make progress — the states, where Donald Trump can’t stop us.”
This could be seen as a huge pull for the organization as many a times it has struggled for attention during battles for the House and Senate. Since the beginning of 2017, $103 million have been raised by the organization. Though this figure still keeps them behind the Republican Governors Association, but they are surely ahead from where they were in the past few cycles.
When the Democratic Governors Association lost control of Missouri, New Hampshire and Vermont while picking up North Carolina in 2016, they raised only $69 million. The last minute surprise switch of West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice (R) brought the party to its lowest number of governors in last year. However, the recovery was done with the victory of New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) in November 2017.
Earlier this summer, the RGA had already touched the $100 million mark and would probably close the quarter with an approx. of $140 million.
Laura Lauder, a philanthropist who gave $100,000 in the third quarter to the DGA said, “In this age of Trump, we’ve got to take back power at the state level.”
Democrats have argued that after years of trying, they have finally won donors who weren’t easy to get for the state campaigns. LinkedIn’s inventor Reid Hoffman, and a private equity CEO Vin Ryan, both gave $500,000 to the DGA. Phil Munger, who has been a top donor to Barack Obama, gave $100,000.
Democrats are quite optimistic about changing their fate by reversing years of defeats. Three states – Colorado, Connecticut and Illinois, where Republicans had threatened Democrats to defeat them, Democrats nominated their independently wealthy candidates from those states.
“We have these four or five more seats that nobody thought would be in play, and now they are,” Inslee said, citing South Dakota, Georgia, Kansas and Oklahoma as races that had stayed on the DGA’s map.