Capitol Alert

Those emails asking for campaign contributions should slow down soon

As tonight’s mid-year deadline for political fundraising looms over candidates for both federal and California offices, donors have probably received a lot of emails like this:

“[Insert name here],

Tomorrow marks the end of the quarter – our first chance to publicly show just how widespread the grassroots support for Marshall’s campaign is. There are just 48 hours left to help us have the strongest report possible…”

Or like this:


The end of June marks the FEC fundraising deadline, and this one is a big deal…”

It’s because campaigns are a little like businesses, unable to attract much investment until they can prove that some sort of a return – in the form of an electoral victory – is possible. Or better yet, plausible. Because the Federal Election Commission and California Secretary of State Alex Padilla’s office in July will only report on fundraising numbers filed before the June 30 deadline, candidates are laying it on thick with their pleas for donations right now. The more you raise, and the faster you do it, the more successful your campaign looks.

Second-term Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom looks to be doing well so far in his run for governor, with SCN Strategies Partner Dan Newman reporting over Twitter on Thursday that Newsom’s raked in $4 million since January with the help of 80,000 donors. According to Newman, Newsom, who launched his campaign in February 2015, has $15 million in the bank.

Current California Treasurer and former two-term State Controller John Chiang didn’t announce his campaign until May 2016, but raised about $2.3 million in his first 45 days, starting late but with a lot of steam.

Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa has also proven a contender, the former Los Angeles mayor and speaker of the state Assembly earlier this month pulling to within 5 percentage points of Newsom in a survey from UC Berkeley’s Institute of Governmental Studies.

This deadline will show whether Chiang and Villaraigosa have managed to keep at their quick pace, or if they’ve lagged enough for Newsom to relax as Chiang embarks on a four-day, five-stop campaign trip to San Diego on Saturday. We’ll also see whether former state Superintendent of Schools and Assemblywoman Delaine Eastin, who entered the race in January, has had enough time to catch up, and how other candidates are faring.

So if you’re sick of all of the emails, they’ll probably calm down after today – at least until the next filing deadline looms.

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WALK FOR WOMEN: Step off from the state Capitol with Dress for Success Sacramento this Saturday, as they power walk, step and stroll a 5k to raise awareness and funds to support women and girls in Sacramento in their quest for economic independence. The “walking testament to the need for success-driven women to become healthy in all aspects of their lives” celebrates 20 years of Dress for Success worldwide, and the organization’s second year serving women in Sacramento. Check-in and on-site registration opens at 8 a.m. at the south steps, and if you’re not too keen on walking or are out of town, you can donate here.

IMPEACHMENT MARCH: Also setting off from the south steps of the Capitol this weekend is the Peace Project Coalition’s Sacramento march calling for the start of impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump and members of his inner circle. There are sister marches in 46 cities across the country and in Mexico on Sunday. The march begins at 10:30 a.m.

CELEBRATE: The Bee wishes a happy birthday to California Rep. Doug LaMalfa, R-Oroville, who turns 57 on Sunday.