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Ellison Raises 90+ Percent of Q2 2009 Large Donor Individual Contributions from Outside 5th CD

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In April 2009, Smart Politics reported on Keith Ellison's unusual campaign fundraising numbers that found the 2-term DFL Congressman raising the vast majority of his large donor individual contributions from out of state.

That reporting period was not an aberration.

The new Federal Election Commission (FEC) data for the second quarter of 2009 finds Ellison (MN-05) raising itemized individual funds outside the Gopher State by a more than 4 to 1 margin for the second straight accounting period. (Such itemized funds are amounts at or above $200).

Smart Politics was first to report that Ellison lead the Minnesota U.S. House delegation in Q1 2009 with 83.2 percent of funds for that quarter raised out of state, followed by DFL Transportation Committee Chair Jim Oberstar (MN-08) at 73.8 percent.

In Q2 2009, Oberstar and Ellison flipped positions, with the 18-term Representative Oberstar raising all of his individual large donor funds out of state and Congressman Ellison raising 80.4 percent of such funds from outside Minnesota.

A deeper cut at the data also finds that while 28 of the 125 large donor contributors came from Minnesota, only 16 of these came from Ellison's 5th Congressional district. In total, only 9.2 percent of Ellison's Q2 individual itemized contributions came from the 5th CD ($8,700 of $95,015).

Keith Ellison Individual Itemized Campaign Contributions by Minnesota Congressional District, Q2 2009

District
Contributors
Funds
1
0
$0
2
3
$3,650
3
5
$4,500
4
1
$500
5
17
$8,700
6
1
$300
7
0
$0
8
1
$1,000
Minnesota
28
$18,650
Total
125
$95,015
Source: FEC data compiled by Smart Politics.

The $76,365 raised out of state by the sophomore Congressman was substantially more than such amounts raised by most of the senior members of the Minnesota U.S. House delegation:

· 10-term DFLer and Agriculture Committee Chair Collin Peterson: $17,200
· 5-term DFLer Betty McCollum: $11,650
· 4-term GOPer John Kline: $14,750

Even Republican Michele Bachmann, who has seen her national profile skyrocket during the past 8 months raised only three-fifths as much as Ellison from outside the Gopher State ($45,655).

Ellison's Q2 2009 fundraising strategy continues a pattern set in motion since he first took office in 2007 of courting more and more out of state receipts for his reelection campaign.

In State vs. Out of State Large Individual Donor Fundraising by Keith Ellison, 2006-2009

Year
Out of State
In State
2006
34.7
65.3
2007
72.0
28.0
2008
74.7
25.3
2009
81.0
19.0
Source: FEC data compiled by Smart Politics.

Regarding the numbers from the first quarter of 2009, Ellison's office explained that most of these out of state donations came from a fundraiser held in Michigan, the state in which he grew up.

This quarter, however, finds Ellison receiving $44,050 in donations from the state of California - more than double the amount raised in Minnesota ($18,650), and more than quintuple the amount raised in the Congressman's own district ($8,700).

In fact, Ellison has raised more money in California than in Minnesota during four of the last eight quarters: Q3 2007 (by $8,068), Q4 2007 (by $165), Q1 2008 (by $74,150), and Q2 2009 (by $25,400).

Ellison also received more contributions from South Carolinians this quarter ($9,850) than from 5th District residents.

This quarter marks the fifth time out of the last eight quarters that Ellison has raised more than 80 percent of his large donor contributions from outside the Gopher State: Q3 2007 (83.5 percent), Q4 2007 (84.0 percent), Q1 2008 (87.2 percent), Q1 2009 (83.2 percent), and Q2 2009 (80.4 percent).

Percentage of Individual Large Donor Contributions Raised in Minnesota, Q2 2009

Year
Year
In State
Out of State
1
Tim Walz
93.3
6.7
2
Erik Paulsen
88.7
11.3
3
John Kline
86.5
13.5
4
Michele Bachmann
65.6
34.4
5
Betty McCollum
50.2
49.8
6
Collin Peterson
41.4
58.6
7
Keith Ellison
19.6
80.4
8
Jim Oberstar
0.0
100.0
Source: FEC data compiled by Smart Politics.

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Previous post: Oberstar Raises 100 Percent of Q2 2009 Itemized Individual Contributions from Out of State
Next post: Bachmann Outraises McCollum in 4th CD; Nearly Outraises Ellison in 5th CD

1 Comment


  • The truth is, Congressman Ellison, as the first Muslim in Congress, is able to raise a lot of money from Muslim communities around the country. He is first and foremost a voice representing the people of MN's 5th district, however many American Muslims also see him as representing their interests in Congress. Though the amount of money he is raising 'in district' vs. 'out of district' is disproportionate, Ellison has done nothing to indicate that he is spending more time representing the interests of the American Muslim community at large more than the interests of his 5th District constituents. In fact, his progressive track record demonstrates his overall commitment to reflecting the values of the 5th District, as opposed to the more conservative positions likely to be supported by the religious communities which are cutting him fund raising checks.

    From a political angel, this is really an advantage for progressives in the 5th District. Instead of having to spend resources on what has always been assumed to be a "safe seat", progressives in the 5th district can invest money and energy in candidates in more contested races, while also resting assured that our representation in Congress is still working for us.

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