South Carolina Democrat Jaime Harrison, who is challenging Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) for his seat in the upper chamber, raised $57 million in the third quarter this year, his campaign said Sunday. That figure easily shatters a Senate fundraising record set by Democrat Beto O'Rourke in 2018, when his campaign reeled in $38 million in the final fundraising period in his race against Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).
Polls indicate Harrison is mounting a more-than-formidable challenge against Graham, but there are a few caveats behind the "unfathomable" donation numbers. O'Rourke, for instance, lost to Cruz, albeit in a tight race. And as The Associated Press' Meg Kinnard notes, most of Harrison's fundraising has come from out of state, which is the norm for a state with a small population like South Carolina and will likely be the case when those numbers from the third quarter haul come to light. Graham, who hasn't released his third quarter numbers yet, also receives most of his funding from out-of-state, so total dollar figures probably aren't the clearest predictive method.
But that doesn't mean Harrison won't try to take advantage of all that extra cash while he can, even with time running out. His campaign told Kinnard the plan is to ensure there's not a penny leftover as they make a final push across the state, with a particular focus on reaching out to Black voters. Read more at Politico and The Associated Press.
UPDATE: I asked @harrisonjaime's campaign how they plan to spend this money. According to campaign manager Zack Carroll, they plan to drain the account, spending "every dollar donated" in digital organizing, communication with Black voters and ads in 7 media markets.
— Meg Kinnard (@MegKinnardAP) October 11, 2020
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