February 27, 2006

Money is always fun to talk about

Samantha Levine has an article in the Chronicle headlined, "DeLay trailing Lampson in cash on hand."

Rep. Tom DeLay, R-Sugar Land, is trailing his potential Democratic opponent, former Rep. Nick Lampson, in fundraising and cash in the bank, according to new financial reports that covered the first six weeks of the year.

DeLay, who faces three contenders in the March 7 Republican primary for the 22nd Congressional District seat, raised $154,712 and spent $304,795 between Jan. 1 and Feb. 15, the time span covered in the reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. The lawmaker reported having about $1.3 million in the bank.

Lampson, unopposed in the Democratic primary, raised $250,970 in the same time frame and spent $125,027. He has more than $1.4 million on hand.


DeLay's largest recent expenditure — $110,000 — went to the law firm employing Richard Cullen, the attorney representing him in the Justice Department investigation of an influence-peddling scandal involving indicted former lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
The only outside expert Levine quotes -- several times -- is Dr. Murray from the University of Houston. Given that Dr. Murray's son was Lampson's first campaign manager, you'd think that would be a fact worth noting. Although I doubt this changes Murray's mind when he opines, it seems that it would make sense to find a different expert.

For this race, campaign finance numbers are interesting, but they won't determine who represents district 22 in the 110th Congress. The law of diminishing returns almost always comes into play. When you consider how many third-party groups are likely to air ads too, who raises more or who has more cash on hand is very unlikely to be the determining factor.

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