Take a look at the following table, which is an approximation of the campaign finance numbers for the “Big Three” gubernatorial candidates in Wisconsin – Democrat Tom Barrett and Republicans Mark Neumann and Scott Walker:

Inside the gubernatorial candidates’ financial numbers
TOM BARRETT MARK NEUMANN SCOTT WALKER
Original Cash On Hand $1.6 million $1 million $2 million
Money Raised $2.4 million $2 million $2.5 million
TOTAL $4 million $3 million $4.5 million
Spent This Period $1.1 million $2 million $2 million
Current Cash On Hand $2.9 million $1 million

$2.5 million


It’s worth noting that while Tom Barrett has raised just about as much (or more, in the case of Mark Neumenn) than the other major candidates in this race, he’s also spent far less to run his statewide campaign. While Barrett spent only $1.1 million on his campaign during this reporting period, Scott Walker has burned through nearly twice as much money as Barrett, spending just about $2 million in campaign donations during this reporting period alone. The fact that Scott Walker’s campaign is burning through campaign funds at a nearly two to one ratio over Tom Barrett tells me that the myth of Scott Walker as the eventual Republican gubernatorial nominee may be in trouble. After all, considering all the institutional support Walker has gotten from the Republican Party of Wisconsin, shouldn’t he be able to coast to the Republican nomination without having to burn through millions and millions of dollars of his campaign’s funds?

If I were a Republican, I’d be more than a little worried that despite the supposed momentum Republicans are thought to have in 2010, Tom Barrett’s fundraising has actually kept pace with Scott Walker’s, and at the rate Walker’s burning through his campaign funds, Tom Barrett will have an even more substantial financial advantage over the eventual Republican nominee once the general election begins.

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3 Responses to Inside the gubernatorial finance numbers

  1. John Casper says:

    Thanks, appreciate the analysis.

  2. xoff says:

    No matter who wins the GOP primary, that candidate will wake up broke on Sept. 15 while Barrett will have a hefty bank balance. The Republican will have some money — they always do — but Barrett will have an advantage at least in the first two weeks or so after the primary. All of which says that people should not get too excited about poll numbers they see now, when Neumann and Walker are spending more heavily on TV. Barrett’s time will come.

    • Locke says:

      Both you and Zach have been openly critical of the hand-selecting candidates approach rather than letting voters decide & I respect you both for standing on your principles on the issue. But they’re doing it for a reason – and ultimately that’s the payoff. Not having candidates knock heads and waste money in a primary so they can have more to spend in the general.

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