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Beto O'Rourke racks up record fundraising haul in Texas Senate bid

15 October 2018

"The people of Texas in all 254 counties are proving that when we reject PACs and come together not as Republicans or Democrats but as Texans and Americans, there's no stopping us", O'Rourke said in the statement.

O'Rourke's haul bests the record for most money raised by a Senate candidate in a single quarter that was set in 2000 by Republican Rick Lazio, who raised $22 million in his failed effort to defeat Hillary Clinton for a Senate seat in NY, according to Roll Call's Bridget Bowman.

In a video to supporters Friday, O'Rourke touted his fundraising as a sign of the strong support he has from Texas voters, who have not elected a Democrat to the Senate since Lloyd Bentsen in 1988.

No Democrat has won statewide office in Texas since 1994, and a Quinnipiac University poll released this week found Cruz leading O'Rourke by 9 points, 54% to 45%.

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Most polls in the state place his opponent, incumbent Republican Sen.

In the second quarter, more than 47 percent of O'Rourke's individual contributions came from women - significantly higher than the 38 percent average for male Senate primary winners. Still others pointed out that money, even vast sums, does not necessarily translate to wins - a prime example being Democrat Jon Ossoff's failed 2017 special election bid for a Georgia House seat, which was the most expensive House race ever.

Cruz previously announced raising $12 million over the same period.

The New York Times/Sienna College poll showed Cruz with an 8-point lead in a survey of 800 likely voters taken between October 8-11.

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SMU Political Science Professor Matthew Wilson says while O'Rourke's fundraising is headline-grabbing, it's not everything.

Spending on presidential, congressional and local election campaigns has been steadily rising in the United States in recent years, partly as a result of unlimited spending by outside groups.The Center for Responsive Politics expects this election cycle to set a new fundraising and spending record.

Monday is the deadline for each of the candidates to submit detailed information to the Federal Election campaign for their latest fundraising efforts.

Nevertheless, money does make a difference.

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It can also buy him more digital advertising, a form of spending that his campaign has invested more money in than any Senate candidate by a wide margin.

Beto O'Rourke racks up record fundraising haul in Texas Senate bid