GOP Senate candidates in NC report fundraising. Here’s who is winning the money race

·2 min read

Campaign finance reports filed this week by the major Republican candidates for U.S. Senate in 2022 show former North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory and U.S. Rep. Ted Budd each raising just over $1 million dollars over the past three months, with former U.S. Rep. Mark Walker far behind.

McCrory and Budd raised nearly identical amounts of $1.03 million, but McCrory’s campaign was quick to point out that Budd’s total includes $25,000 he loaned to his campaign. That’s on top of $250,000 Budd had previously loaned.

“With every fundraising quarter that passes, it becomes more and more apparent that we are the only candidate in this race who has convinced North Carolinians to invest in our campaign,” McCrory said in a press release.

McCrory, who served one term as governor before losing his re-election bid to Democrat Roy Cooper in 2016, has made no loans to his campaign.

Budd, a two-term congressman representing the 13th District, chose to emphasize another number in his filing: $2 million cash on hand. That’s roughly $400,000 more than McCrory reported and more than any other candidate in the race to succeed retiring Republican U.S. Sen. Richard Burr.

“We’ve got the momentum and we’re only accelerating,” said Jonathan Felts, Budd’s campaign spokesman, in a press release.

Walker represented the 6th Congressional District for three terms but didn’t seek re-election last year, after state lawmakers passed another congressional redistricting at the suggestion of judges. The redistricting made the district more favorable to Democrats. His filings showed that he raised $122,000. He reported having $613,000 cash on hand.

Budd outspent both Republicans in the quarter, the reports show, while Walker has spent the most so far in the race. Budd spent $730,000 in the quarter and $1.3 million total, compared to McCrory spending $392,000 in the quarter and $669,000 total. Walker spent $422,000 in the quarter and $1.5 million total.

One Democrat in the Senate race has reported raising more than McCrory and Budd. Cheri Beasley, the former state Supreme Court chief justice, raised more than $1.5 million for the quarter, her campaign told McClatchy News earlier this month.

State Sen. Jeff Jackson of Charlotte raised $902,000. Former state Sen. Erica Smith, who represented a rural northeastern district, brought in $129,000, campaign finance reports show.

The U.S. Senate is split 50-50, with Democrats in control because Vice President Kamala Harris has a tie breaking vote. Next year, 34 Senate seats will be on the ballot — 20 held by Republicans and 14 by Democrats.