From self-funding to super PAC support, this is how much money Colorado’s Congressional candidates have raised

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
California Sen. Alex Padilla (from right) and Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet attend a campaign event for U.S. House candidate Yadira Caraveo at the Alianza Business Center in Thornton. Oct. 4, 2022.

With less than a month to go before Election Day, campaigns filed their latest fundraising hauls and Colorado’s Senate candidates raised the most money. 

By the end of September, Democrat Michael Bennet had pulled in $5.3 million, bringing the total amount raised for his reelection campaign this cycle to $19.9 million. Bennet spent $8.4 million in the third quarter and had about $4.9 million cash on hand for the final stretch.

Hoping to unseat Bennet, Republican Joe O’Dea raised $3 million, including a $1 million loan he provided to his campaign. It was the second time he had infused his campaign war chest with a million dollars. In total, the first-time candidate had raised $6.4 million for his run and had spent about $3.1 million between July and the end of September. He ended the quarter with $712,000 cash on hand, far less than Bennet.

Both candidates received boosts from outside spending groups.

Supporting O’Dea is The American Policy Fund super PAC, which had over $4.1 million dollars as of September 30. The majority of that money came from Wyoming businessman Timothy Mellon, the grandson of banker and industrialist Andrew Mellon, who made news last year for donating most of the money for Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s border wall fund. The Senate Leadership Fund, which is aligned with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, donated over a million dollars to the super PAC,

Supporting Bennet on the other side of the aisle was 53 Peaks, a super PAC, which reported $3 million from Majority Forward, a Democratic-aligned group, to help the Senate incumbent. Bennet also received millions of dollars from the Giffords PAC, the League of Conservation Voters Victory Fund and the National Association of Realtors Congressional Fund.

Open seats in the House generate strong numbers

In a race that is garnering national attention for its potential for determining control of the U.S. House of Representatives, the candidates in Colorado’s 8th congressional district continued to raise funds.

Democrat Yadira Caraveo showed strong fundraising numbers. She raised $1.5 million this quarter and ended September with about $582,000 cash on hand. 

Republican Barbara Kirkmeyer raised under half of that, bringing in about $666,000 and spending about $420,000. She goes into the last weeks of the election cycle with about $309,000.  

Both candidates are getting outside help through independent expenditures in the race, including from the Republican and Democratic House campaign arms.

Most analysts give Kirkmeyer the edge, given midterm trends that tend to favor the party not currently in power.

In another open seat this cycle, the 7th congressional district, the Democratic candidate Brittany Pettersen raised $1.1 million and entered into the final stretch with about $874,000 cash on hand.

Republican challenger Erik Aadland raised $627,000, but had spent most of that. He entered into the final weeks with $64,000 cash on hand.

A super PAC that backs Aadland continued to spend money to support his candidacy, despite having a debt over $300,000.

In Congressional District 3, Adam Frisch had raised almost $1.7 million, which brought his total fundraising to $4.3 million since he entered the race earlier this year. The former Aspen City Council member had previously loaned his campaign more than $2.2 million. 

But in the last weeks of the election cycle, he had $761,000 left in the bank, which was much less cash on hand than Republican incumbent Laurent Boebert.

The Western Slope congresswoman raised about $936,000. In this election cycle, Boebert had been a strong fundraiser, collecting over $6.5 million. She entered the final few weeks with just over $1.9 million cash on hand.

Boebert’s financial position reflected a trend among Colorado’s incumbents. As the election nears, they have more cash on hand than their challengers.