Manchin, Morrisey get big money for Senate campaigns; Jenkins falls behind

By JAKE ZUCKERMAN

Charleston Gazette-Mail

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., raised more in the third quarter than both of the two main Republican senatorial candidates combined.

West Virginia’s lone federal Democrat raised more than $900,000 in campaign contributions, leaving him with $4.1 million in the bank, according to a news release from the campaign.

In Attorney General Patrick Morrisey’s first reported quarter of the race, he raised roughly $672,000, leaving him with $548,000 in cash on hand, according to a news release from his campaign.

Lagging behind the two, Rep. Evan Jenkins, R-W.Va., received roughly $220,000 in contributions, leaving him with $1.26 million on hand, according to data from the Federal Election Commission.

In a follow-up email, Manchin’s campaign manager, Patrick Devney, said the senator has not taken out any loans for the campaign.

A spokeswoman for Morrisey would not respond to inquiries about whether he has loaned his campaign money, as he has in the past.

Andy Sere, a spokesman for Jenkins’ campaign, said the team still has more cash on hand than Morrisey.

“If you look at the totality of what we’ve done since preparing to run for Senate, we’ve raised more than Patrick Morrisey,” he said. “We’ve raised $900,000 this year, we have close to $1.3 million on hand to Patrick’s $550,000.”

He said despite the gap, the Jenkins campaign has enough in its war chest to get its message out to the public, and the candidates will determine the outcome, not their FEC numbers.

“While we have more than twice the money that he does right now, I don’t think money will determine the outcome of this primary even if his campaign has spent as much money as us,” he said. “I’d call this race a high-information primary, in which each candidate will have more than enough money to communicate a message. I think that the message is what’s going to determine this primary. We feel very good about the position we’re in financially to tell the story that we want to tell.”

Though Morrisey’s spokeswoman declined to answer whether he loaned the campaign any money, he has done so in his two races for attorney general.

He loaned his 2012 campaign $1.44 million, according to his post-general election campaign finance disclosure.

He then loaned his 2016 campaign $528,000, according to the same report filed after the election.

According to 2017 reports from the West Virginia Secretary of State’s office, his campaigns still owe their candidate nearly $1.27 million from the 2012 race and $525,000 from the 2016 race.

While Steve Bannon, the Breitbart News executive chairman and former adviser to President Donald Trump, has allied himself with Morrisey, he appears to be at odds with key Breitbart funders.

Members of the Mercer family partially own Breitbart, yet have all donated to Jenkins’ campaign. Diana Mercer, Robert Mercer and Rebekah Mercer have all donated $5,400, the cap for individual contributions, to Jenkins’ campaign.

FEC reports for the quarter are due by Oct. 15 and can take roughly a week to upload to the website.

Reach Jake Zuckerman at [email protected], 304-348-4814 or follow @jake_zuckerman on Twitter.

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