Groups Backing GOP Congress Say 2017 Was Record Fundraising YearBy
Two super-PACs supporting Ryan raise a combined $66 million
Groups are building up staff in key contests in 2018
Two groups focused on boosting House Speaker Paul Ryan’s agenda and the prospects of Republicans maintaining control of Congress said Tuesday they raised a combined $66 million in 2017, the best non-election-year fundraising total in their history.
The Congressional Leadership Fund and the American Action Network said the total compares to $7 million raised by the groups in 2015, the most recent previous non-election year. CLF, a super political action committee that’s already building out staff in key districts where close 2018 races are expected, said it ended the year with more than $15 million in the bank.
“CLF’s record-setting off-year fundraising is a testament to Speaker Ryan’s leadership and House Republicans’ conservative agenda,” Corry Bliss, the executive director of the groups, said in a statement. “Knowing history is against us, CLF’s field program has laid the groundwork to protect the Republican House majority well ahead of Election Day, opening 27 field offices and making over 5 million voter contacts to date."
Republicans will need all the resources they can get. Typically, the party that doesn’t hold the White House almost always picks up seats in the midterm elections. Democrats need a net gain of 24 seats to win the House and two to secure a majority in the Senate. Analysts suggest their chances are better in the House because they are defending far more Senate seats than Republicans and only have a few strong pick-up opportunities.