Texas Democrats Fund Out-of-State Races

A Democrat has not won statewide office in Texas since 1994, prompting wealthy Texas Democrats to send their political donations to fund out-of-state races.
Mon May 7, 2012 10:15 pm
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Texas Democrats have no qualms about whipping out their checkbooks to support political candidates. Just don’t ask them to fund a Texas Democrat.

The Houston Chronicle’s Richard S. Dunham and Emily Wilkins analyzed Federal Election Commission records and found that “more than three-fourths of Democratic political money raised in Texas has left the state.” These fundraising numbers suggest that Texas Democrats prefer backing winners in other parts of the country over also-rans in Texas.

A Democrat has not won statewide office since 1994, when Bob Bullock was reelected as lieutenant governor. This eighteen-year losing streak led the Texas Tribune’s Ross Ramsey to quip in January that “If this were high school football, we’d move the Texas Democrats into a lower league with smaller schools where they might be more competitive.”

Dunham and Wilkins found this fundraising gap to be particularly pronounced in U.S. Senate donations:

Nowhere is the money exodus more obvious than in U.S. Senate donations. Texas Democrats have given out-of-state Democrats about 30 times as much money as they have to their own party’s Texas Senate candidates.

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