Monday, November 16, 2009

Follow the Money, Part Two

Let’s start crunching our colossal dataset of Montgomery County political contributions!

Here is the distribution by category of all contributions and loans received by every MoCo county and state incumbent, along with nineteen past incumbents and potential challengers, since 1999.

Individual contributions dominate the database. They account for 79.7% of all contributions and 50.4% of all money. Business entities and PACs follow, accounting for 27.1% of all money, but that is misleading. Many individual contributors are business owners, and they sometimes use their children, spouses and employees as channels for their money - a practice that we did not track. Even with this extraordinarily narrow definition, business donated more than five times the money that labor contributed (4.9%). Self-funding totaled almost $2 million and had the highest average contribution/loan level ($4,036). That reflects the fact that candidates are allowed to donate unlimited amounts to their own campaign funds, and some do!

Maryland-based entities accounted for 84.2% of contributions and 80.2% of all money, with entities in D.C. (7.2%) and Virginia (4.7%) running far behind. But many politicians collect far larger sums from out of state, and they will be revealed in time.

Here are the leaders in total receipts and receipts from individuals from 1999 through 2009.

Total Receipts (Including Loans)

1. Steve Silverman, County Council/Executive Challenger: $3,143,083
2. Ike Leggett, County Executive: $1,537,954
3. Rob Garagiola, Senator (D-15): $821,824
4. Howard Denis, County Council: $649,938
5. George Leventhal, County Council: $596,637
6. Brian Frosh, Senator (D-16): $510,255
7. Nancy Floreen, County Council: $503,505
8. Herman Taylor, Delegate (D-14): $471,061
9. Duchy Trachtenberg, County Council: $450,367
10. Ida Ruben, Senator (D-20): $402,518

Total Receipts from Individuals (Not Including Self or Family Financing)

1. Steve Silverman, County Council/Executive Challenger: $1,610,767
2. Ike Leggett, County Executive: $975,573
3. Brian Frosh, Senator (D-16): $406,849
4. Duchy Trachtenberg, County Council: $323,317
5. Jamie Raskin, Senator (D-20): $322,395
6. Nancy Floreen, County Council: $317,879
7. George Leventhal, County Council: $298,585
8. Howard Denis, County Council: $292,486
9. Ida Ruben, Senator (D-20): $231,448
10. Rob Garagiola, Senator (D-15): $201,101

Percentage of Total Receipts from Individuals (Not Including Self or Family Financing)

1. Phil Andrews, County Council: 98.8%
2. Bill Frick, Delegate (D-16): 88.1%
3. Jean Cryor, Delegate (D-15): 85.8%
4. Jamie Raskin, Senator (D-20): 84.2%
5. Saqib Ali, Delegate (D-39): 82.6%
6. Brian Frosh, Senator (D-16): 79.7%
7. Bill Bronrott, Delegate (D-16): 78.2%
8. Guled Kassim, Delegate/County Council Challenger: 75.7%
9. Marc Elrich, County Council: 73.3%
10. Heather Mizeur, Delegate (D-20): 71.9%

61. Ben Kramer, Delegate/County Council Challenger: 2.4%
60. Robin Ficker, County Executive/Council Challenger: 5.0%
59. Steve Abrams, School Board/County Council Challenger: 12.9%
58. Mike Lenett, Senator (D-19): 13.3%
57. Jeff Waldstreicher, Delegate (D-18): 15.5%
56. Luiz Simmons, Delegate (D-17): 16.6%
55. Rona Kramer, Senator (D-14): 18.6%
54. Roger Manno, Delegate (D-19): 24.1%
53. Henry Heller, Delegate (D-19): 24.2%
52. Rob Garagiola, Senator (D-15): 24.5%

Just one of the leaders in individual receipts has run in only one election: District 20 Senator Jamie Raskin, who knocked off incumbent Ida Ruben in 2006. Known as being one of the county’s leading progressives, Raskin has developed into one of its top fundraisers. Phil Andrews, the runaway leader in percentage of receipts from individuals, has long turned away contributions from developers and PACs. Marc Elrich also refuses developer financing. Some of the candidates who received the lowest percentages from individuals benefitted from self-funding. We’ll find out who they are later in the series.

Tomorrow, we’ll look at business and labor.