Senators and Representatives Raising the Most Money for the Midterm Election

October 26, 2018 by Steven M. Peters

Source: Ethan Miller / Getty Images
Politics runs on money, and it has for a long time. George Washington, a wealthy man who made his fortune initially through land speculation, spent heavily — “many times the going price for a house or a plot of land,” according to historian Gil Troy — to get elected to the House of Burgesses, the representative assembly in colonial Virginia. Part of the money, Troy reports, went to the poll watcher recording the votes. As one of Washington’s successors, Andrew Jackson, declared “Money is power.”

Jackson did not think that was a good thing. In vetoing a bill to recharter the Second Bank of the United States, he asked rhetorically “whether the people of the United States are to govern … or whether the power and money of a great corporation are to be secretly exerted to influence their judgment and control their decisions.” Old Hickory would no doubt be apoplectic if he were alive in today’s political climate.

Teddy Roosevelt called for “prohibiting all corporations from contributing to the campaign expenses of any party” back in 1906, but we know how that turned out. In a landmark decision in 2010, the Supreme Court ruled that First Amendment free speech rights — including the right to contribute to political candidates or causes — applied to corporations and other groups as well as to individuals. As a result, not only single donors but organizations, including big hedge funds, unions, or business empires can — and, most emphatically, do — pour money into election campaigns, albeit indirectly through political action committees (PACs).

While these big contributors get a lot of attention, according to the Center for Responsive Politics (opensecrets.org), only a tiny percentage of the population — 0.37% — has contributed more $200 or more this year. That small percentage, however, accounts for 70.4% of the money donated.

Perhaps surprisingly, given the reputation of the GOP as the party of the wealthy, more money has been given this year to Democratic than to Republican candidates; the three candidates who have raised the most money are Democrats, as are 18 of the top 20.

Click here for senators and representatives raising the most money for 2018.

To identify the members of Congress raising the most money, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed total money raised by U.S. congressmen, congresswomen, and senators between Nov. 9, 2016 (the day after election day and start of the campaign season) and Oct. 15 (the most recent Federal Election Commission filing deadline). We only considered incumbent candidates. Congressmen and congresswomen running for Senate seats were included. All data was obtained from the FEC.

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

50. Democratic Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $4,843,493
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,739,154
> Seat sought: Senate (Rhode Island)

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Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

49. Republican Rep. Kevin Brady
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $4,899,672
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,302,320
> Seat sought: House (Texas)

Source: Larry French / Getty Images

48. Republican Rep. Brian Mast
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $4,927,666
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,445,667
> Seat sought: House (Florida)

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

47. Republican Rep. Kevin Cramer
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $4,954,357
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,195,260
> Seat sought: Senate (North Dakota)

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Source: Drew Angerer / Getty Images

46. Republican Rep. Gregory P. Walden
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $4,963,165
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,755,746
> Seat sought: House (Oregon)

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

45. Democratic Rep. S. Raja Krishnamoorthi
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,032,475
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,931,919
> Seat sought: House (Illinois)

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Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

44. Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,099,705
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,032,412
> Seat sought: House (Virginia)

Source: Paul Morigi / Getty Images

43. Republican Rep. Cathy Mcmorris Rodgers
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,107,583
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $799,658
> Seat sought: House (Washington)

Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

42. Republican Rep. Erik Paulsen
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,183,358
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,332,114
> Seat sought: House (Minnesota)

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Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

41. Republican Sen. John A. Barrasso
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,466,453
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,547,742
> Seat sought: Senate (Wyoming)

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

40. Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,699,186
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,571,420
> Seat sought: House (California)

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Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

39. Republican Sen. Roger F. Wicker
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,849,910
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $3,202,381
> Seat sought: Senate (Mississippi)

Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

38. Republican Rep. Peter Roskam
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,866,627
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,858,260
> Seat sought: House (Illinois)

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

37. Democratic Sen. Martin Trevor Heinrich
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $5,894,720
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,367,277
> Seat sought: Senate (New Mexico)

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Source: Mark Makela / Getty Images

36. Republican Rep. Lou Barletta
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $6,170,015
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,280,637
> Seat sought: Senate (Pennsylvania)

Source: Win McNamee / Getty Images

35. Democratic Rep. Josh Gottheimer
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $6,326,126
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $5,059,282
> Seat sought: House (New Jersey)

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Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

34. Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $7,024,634
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $5,900,934
> Seat sought: Senate (Minnesota)

Source: Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

33. Republican Rep. James B. Renacci
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $7,351,671
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,360,306
> Seat sought: Senate (Ohio)

Source: Stephen Maturen / Getty Images

32. Democratic Sen. Tina Smith
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $7,411,230
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,902,475
> Seat sought: Senate (Minnesota)

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Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

31. Republican Rep. Kevin Mccarthy
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $7,469,855
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $3,961,716
> Seat sought: House (California)

Source: Mark Wilson / Getty Images

30. Republican Rep. Steve Scalise
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $7,615,498
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,670,763
> Seat sought: House (Louisiana)

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Source: Drew Angerer / Getty Images

29. Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin III
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $7,791,325
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,200,531
> Seat sought: Senate (West Virginia)

Source: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

28. Republican Rep. Greg Gianforte
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $8,202,915
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $397,604
> Seat sought: House (Montana)

Source: Kena Betancur / Getty Images

27. Democratic Sen. Robert Menendez
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $8,232,094
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $5,579,489
> Seat sought: Senate (New Jersey)

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Source: Drew Angerer / Getty Images

26. Republican Rep. Karen Handel
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $8,261,411
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $978,694
> Seat sought: House (Georgia)

Source: Drew Angerer / Getty Images

25. Democratic Rep. Conor Lamb
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $8,616,007
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $880,536
> Seat sought: House (Pennsylvania)

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Source: Ethan Miller / Getty Images

24. Independent Sen. Bernard Sanders
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $8,898,936
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $8,811,936
> Seat sought: Senate (Vermont)

Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

23. Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $8,911,320
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,815,829
> Seat sought: Senate (Washington)

Source: David Calvert / Getty Images

22. Republican Sen. Dean Heller
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $10,502,061
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,724,176
> Seat sought: Senate (Nevada)

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Source: Win McNamee / Getty Images

21. Republican Rep. Devin Gerald Nunes
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $10,583,761
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $5,124,715
> Seat sought: House (California)

Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

20. Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $11,568,094
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $5,001,725
> Seat sought: House (Tennessee)

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Source: Zach Gibson / Getty Images

19. Democratic Sen. Christopher S. Murphy
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $11,903,345
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $7,277,322
> Seat sought: Senate (Connecticut)

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

18. Democratic Sen. Joseph S. Donnelly
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $11,956,282
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,539,364
> Seat sought: Senate (Indiana)

Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

17. Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $12,551,544
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $3,034,910
> Seat sought: Senate (Michigan)

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Source: Bryan Bedder / Getty Images

16. Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $12,774,453
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $3,155,949
> Seat sought: Senate (North Dakota)

Source: Tasos Katopodis / Getty Images

15. Democratic Sen. Jon Tester
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $15,594,644
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $1,835,126
> Seat sought: Senate (Montana)

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Source: Jessica Kourkounis / Getty Images

14. Democratic Sen. Timothy Michael Kaine
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $15,620,142
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $5,011,275
> Seat sought: Senate (Virginia)

Source: Drew Angerer / Getty Images

13. Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $15,994,654
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $4,069,222
> Seat sought: Senate (California)

Source: Rich Fury / Getty Images

12. Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $16,003,275
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,108,612
> Seat sought: Senate (Arizona)

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Source: Ethan Miller / Getty Images

11. Democratic Rep. Jacky Rosen
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $16,471,308
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,630,033
> Seat sought: Senate (Nevada)

Source: Mark Makela / Getty Images

10. Democratic Sen. Robert P. Casey Jr.
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $16,855,154
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $6,701,572
> Seat sought: Senate (Pennsylvania)

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Source: Drew Angerer / Getty Images

9. Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $17,158,136
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $10,735,796
> Seat sought: Senate (New York)

Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

8. Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $20,942,247
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $8,199,749
> Seat sought: Senate (Ohio)

Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

7. Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $23,491,626
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $8,365,252
> Seat sought: Senate (Florida)

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Source: Astrid Riecken / Getty Images

6. Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $24,186,719
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $15,016,383
> Seat sought: Senate (Massachusetts)

Source: Astrid Riecken / Getty Images

5. Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $24,206,538
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $5,011,479
> Seat sought: Senate (Wisconsin)

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Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

4. Republican Sen. Rafael Edward Ted Cruz
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $24,812,439
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $11,262,609
> Seat sought: Senate (Texas)

Source: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

3. Democratic Sen. Doug Jones
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $25,083,352
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $2,167,365
> Seat sought: Senate (Alabama)

Source: Aaron P. Bernstein / Getty Images

2. Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $28,629,509
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $3,196,488
> Seat sought: Senate (Missouri)

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Source: Chris Covatta / Getty Images

1. Democratic Rep. Robert Beto O’Rourke
> Total raised Nov 9. – Oct. 15: $61,783,371
> Cash on hand as of Oct. 15: $22,902,188
> Seat sought: Senate (Texas)