WASHINGTON (February 24, 2012)—Maryland Democratic Sen. Ben Cardin has raised millions more in campaign funds than his nearest rival, according to year-end campaign financial reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.
Cardin's campaign reported raising $697,000 for the October-December quarter, bringing the total funds raised
Cardin's campaign has $2,664,270 on hand as of Dec. 31. His largest contributors include employees of The Time Group and Goldman Sachs, and their families.
Cardin, who is serving his first term and who enjoys the support of President Barack Obama, faces eight Democrats in the primary on April 3: Richard Blagmon, a Naval Reserve officer from Upper Marlboro, is relying on personal loans worth $12,500. None of the remaining Democrats—Blaine Taylor, JP Cusick, Christopher Garner, Ralph Jaffe, Ed Tinus, Lih Young and prominent Prince George's County pastor, the Rev. C. Anthony Muse—filed fundraising activity.
Candidates do not have to file until their campaign spending or donations reach $5,000.
Only two of Cardin's Republican rivals reported fundraising in the final 2011 quarter. Bongino raised $130,000 in 2011, and said he expected this (March) quarter alone to exceed that number. Richard Douglas, a former deputy assistant secretary of Defense, raised more than $63,000, but has only $9,000 cash left on hand.
The remaining Republican candidates Joseph Alexander, Robert Broadus, William Capps Jr., Rick Hoover, Jim Israel, John Kimble, Brian Vaeth and Corrogan Vaughn did not report fundraising activity.
Cardin, a former speaker of the Maryland House of Delegates with a 45-year career in Annapolis and Washington said is "taking nothing for granted in the race," said his spokeswoman Sue Walitsky.
Democrats have about twice as many registered voters than the GOP in Maryland, and have held both Senate seats since 1987. But Bongino points to wins by former Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush in Maryland as proof there will be a fight.
"Republicans have won here before ... There are no lost causes; there are causes you're willing to fight for, and those you're not," he said. Bongino has received the endorsement of a number of representatives on The Hill and in Annapolis, including Maryland Senate Minority Whip Ed Reilly, R-Anne Arundel. He told Capital News Service he is using White House connections he made while protecting the president to help him in his campaign.
Paul Hernnson, director of the Center for American Politics and Citizenship at the University of Maryland, said Bongino faces an uphill battle.
"Cardin is a well-known politician in Maryland, he's been around for a long time, and he's well-liked, and Maryland is a Democratic-leaning state," Hernnson said.
The primary is on April 3. The next FEC
29-FEB-2012: This story as originally published on 24-FEB-2012 contained several errors. Cardin's campaign fundraising totals were misstated. He raised more than $3.1 million for 2011, and $4.2 million for the election cycle. In addition, large contributors were mischaracterized. He received contributions from employees of The Time Group and Goldman Sachs and their families, not from the corporations themselves. Finally the filing date was misstated. The next quarterly report is due April 15. Changes have been incorporated into the article above.