Congressional Fundraising Roundup

With New York’s presidential primary behind us, we’re now looking forward to this year’s Congressional primary in June.

We’re watching eight different races from Long Island to the Finger Lakes that are either competitive this year or have been in past election cycles.

The most recent fundraising deadline was at the end of March, and filings started trickling in late last week. We have compiled the latest numbers so you don’t have to, including how much each candidate has raised overall this election cycle and how much they raised in the first quarter of this year. We have also included how much cash each candidate has on hand as of the latest filing.

Candidates are listed below in order from most-money-raised to least. Remember to click the ‘Read More’ button for the full list.

You can find more on each of these races in our Race for Congress section.

3rd Congressional District

Steve Stern (D)
Total Raised: $500,633
Total Raised First Quarter: $500,633
Cash on Hand: $444,530

Tom Suozzi (D)
Total Raised: $451,306
Total Raised First Quarter: $451,306
Cash on Hand: $374,345

Anna Kaplan (D)
Total Raised: $445,160
Total Raised First Quarter:  $445,160
Cash on Hand: $344,659

Jack Martins (R)
Total Raised: $283,598
Total Raised First Quarter: $283,598
Cash on Hand: $242,223

Jon Kaiman (D)
Total Raised: $242,379
Total Raised First Quarter: $242,379
Cash on Hand: $189,305

Philip Pidot (R)
Total Raised: $106,796
Total Raised First Quarter: $106,796
Cash on Hand: $83,696

Chad Lupinacci (R)
Total Raised: $27,720
Total Raised First Quarter: $27,720
Cash on Hand: $25,262

Jonathan Clarke (D), Dan Serota (R), and Robert Trotta (R) have not submitted a filing for the first quarter.

More >

NY-24: Deacon Touts ‘Toss-Up’ Status

Democratic congressional hopeful Colleen Deacon on Friday touted the decision by the respected Cook Political Report to designate the 24th district race in New York a “tossup” contest.

The move is hardly surprising, giving the Syracuse-area seat in central New York has been battleground district for the last decade or so, with voters there turning out incumbents virtually every cycle since 2006.

The seat is currently held by Republican John Katko, who defeated Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei last year.

Deacon, a former aide to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, is among several Democrats vying for the nomintation there.

In a statement responding to the move from lean Republican to tossup, Deacon knocked Katko over the minimum wage and paid family leave — two major issues facing state lawmakers in Albany this month.

“My opponent John Katko has extreme positions against working families here in Central New York,” said Democratic candidate Colleen Deacon. “He doesn’t support a gradual increase in the minimum wage, he doesn’t support paid family leave. He talks about creating jobs yet he isn’t doing anything to actually address this issue. It’s no wonder the hard working men and women of Central New York are looking for a change – Congressman Katko just won’t stand up for the things that matter to them most.

NY-24: In Fundraising Appeal, Deacon Highlights Paid Family Leave

A fundraising email, sent through the list of her old boss U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, congressional hopeful Colleen Deacon alludes to the push on both the state and national level for a paid family leave program.

“When I became pregnant, my job offered no health care or benefits – so I was forced to quit just after my son, Adrian, was born and rely on government assistance to keep us healthy,” writes Deacon, who is running for the central New York congressional district currently led by first term Rep. John Katko. “I was lucky to have a supportive family and access to the help I needed, but not everyone can say the same. I know how hard it can be to make ends meet, and I have the perspective it takes to go to Washington and fight for working families.”

The appeal comes as Gov. Andrew Cuomo in New York is pushing for a 12-week paid family leave program in the state as part of the budget, due at the end of this month.

Gillibrand, a former House member herself before she was elevated to Hillary Clinton’s old Senate seat, has made a point of pushing for more Democratic women to occupy elected office on different levels of government.

Deacon is a former regional representative for Gillibrand’s central New York office.

Deacon is one of several Democrats vying to take on Katko later this fall in a June Democratic primary.

NY-24: Independence Party Endorses Katko

The state Independence Party on Thursday endorsed freshman Republican Rep. John Katko for re-election in central New York’s 24th congressional district.

“We in the Independence Party of New York believe government can only do its best for the people of this country by reaching across party lines to accomplish the work needed,” said Chairman Frank MacKay. “Congressman Katko has had this as his core principle since he first went to Washington. We are proud to once again endorse him.”

The Independence Party is a separate ballot with a politically nebulous agenda. The party has been accused of essentially being a shell organization for patronage and confusing to voters who believe they are registering as independent or “blank” — i.e., not in a political party.

But the ballot line could be key for a district that has been a swing seat for the last several election cycles. Katko unseated Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei in 2014, who in turn had unseated the woman he last to in 2012, Republican Ann Marie Buerkle.

“I am honored and thankful for the continued support of the New York State Independence Party,” Katko said.

“I’m proud to be an independent and responsive voice for Central New York in Congress, focusing on the issues that matter most to families and individuals in our community and working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to find common ground. I will continue to advance bipartisan solutions on the issues that matter most to Central New York, including addressing the devastating rate of poverty, growing our local economy, combating the heroin epidemic, and working to strengthen our national security.”

Katko Challenger Has $85K In Cash On Hand

The congressional campaign of Democrat Eric Kingson announced on Thursday it had raised $101,301 in the first fundraising quarter as he seeks to win the nomination to take on Republican freshman John Katko.

It is not immediately clear how much of the money Kingson raised from individual donors.

But Kingson, a college professor who has studied Social Security, has nearly $85,000 in cash on hand for the central New York House.

“I am so grateful for the outpouring of support for my candidacy thus far. Our strong fundraising numbers will enable us to press our message about expanding Social Security, guaranteeing paid family leave and creating an economy in which people can work for a better life right here in Central New York,” said Kingson in a statement.

Democrat Colleen Deacon, a former aide to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand in the central New York area, entered the race earlier this month, and has already received a fundraising boost from her old boss.

Gillibrand Aide Launching House Campaign

deaconColleen Deacon, a regional director for Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, is launching a campaign to run for the central New York congressional seat held by Republican freshman John Katko.

Deacon has a Twitter account, as well as a campaign website, geared toward the run.

Updated: Deacon has filed with the Federal Election Commission. You can view her filing here.

“I have seen – up close and personal – how the issues in front of Congress effect real people’s lives, and I want to be a real voice for Central New York,” Deacon states on her campaign website.

College professor Eric Kingson is the other declared Democrat in the race.

Katko last year unseated Democratic incumbent Dan Maffei in the 24th congressional district, which includes the city of Syracuse. More >

Katko Raises Nearly $300K

Freshman U.S. Rep. John Katko reported on Tuesday having raised $299,431 in his first fundraising cycle since taking office.

Katko did not report through his campaign how much money he has on hand in the campaign account. But the money he is reporting today came from 429 individual donors.

“I’m incredibly humbled by the strong support we have received throughout NY-24 and across the country,” Katko said in a statement. “I am focused on providing a strong voice for Central New York in Washington, and I’m honored to have the support of so many of the individuals and families that I serve in Congress.”

Katko won the central New York congressional seat last year after unseating Democratic incumbent Dan Maffei.

Katko Hires Senior Staff

Rep.-elect John Katko on Monday announced he hired five senior staffers for his office, plucking aides from the offices of Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney, Reps. Chris Gibson, Richard Hanna and state Sen. John DeFrancisco.

“I have pledged to have an open door policy, to provide exceptional constituent service, to understand local issues, and to advance the needs of Central New York in Washington,” said Katko in a statement. “That starts with a strong team. These individuals bring knowledge, experience, and passion for serving the people of the 24th Congressional District. I am confident that this dedicated team of individuals will excel in their new roles and I am excited to work alongside them to provide strong leadership for Central New York in Congress.”

Katko, a Republican who defeated Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei last month for the Syracuse-area House seat, hired Brad Gentile for the chief of staff post.

Gentile previously worked as a legislative director and deputy chief of staff to Rep. Chris Gibson, a Hudson Valley Republican. Gentile’s resume also includes a stint as a legislative assistance in Speaker John Boehner’s office.

Katko also hired Tom Connellan, a Syracuse police detective, to work on his local staff as district director.

Terre Dennis, a former regional directro for Rep. Richard Hanna is being brought on as a director of constituent services.

Justin Sayles will be Katko’s deputy district director; he previouls was a project coordinator for Onondaga County.

Erin O’Connor, who has worked in Sen. John DeFrancisco’s office, will be communications director and counsel.

Maffei Ad Defends Family Against ‘Personal Attacks’

On the heels of a poll that shows he has lost the lead in his re-election bid, Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei has released a new TV ad featuring his wife and newborn daughter that slams his Republican opponent, John Katko, for making “personal attacks on my family.”

“Rep. Dan Maffei grew up in Central New York, on the East Side of Syracuse, and is committed to making the middle class in Central New York stronger,” said the congressman’s campaign manager Kane Miller, campaign manager. “He couldn’t be more proud of his wife Abby, her career, and their daughter Maya. He will continue to stand up for his family and middle class families across Central New York, and will never allow personal attacks from John Katko or anyone else about his family.”

The decision by Maffei and his wife to purchase a $700,000 home in the D.C. suburbs this past spring, coupled with the fact that Abby Maffei split her time between Syracuse and D.C. for her job at CARE, an international humanitarian group that fight global poverty, and that the couple’s daughter was born in a D.C. hospital have all become fodder throughout the campaign for Katko, who has questioned the congressman’s dedication to the district.

Maffei took issue with this line of attack during a TWC News debate in Syracuse this week, saying his wife and daughter should be “out of bounds” – even though he has included them in his campaign literature and ads (like this one, for example). The congressman said the birth of his daughter in D.C. enabled him to “make every single vote for this congressional district while I was being a good  father.”

He said the baby is now in New York, where he is spending all of his time campaigning to keep the seat he first won in 2008, lost in 2010 (to former Republican Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle) and then won back (from Buerkle) in 2012.

Here’s the transcript of Maffei’s new ad, which starts airing this week on stations across NY-24:

Katko Opens Up 10-Point Lead Over Maffei

Republican John Katko leads Democratic incumbent Rep. Dan Maffei by 10 percentage points in the 24th congressional district, a Siena College-Post Standard poll released this morning found.

Katko, a former prosecutor, receives 52 percent of the vote, compared to 42 percent of support for Maffei, a Democrat who is in second, non-consecutive term.

The poll found Maffei has a broad, 32-point lead in the city of Syracuse, but that is a decline from a 48-point difference.

In the rest of Onondaga County, the poll found Katko leading Maffei by 21 points. In other areas of the central New York district, Katko is leading by 13 percentage ponits.

Previously, a Siena College poll found Maffei with an 8-percentage point advantage, 50 percent to Katko’s 42 percent.

The race for the NY-24 has been marked by an onslaught of negative advertising by the congressional campaign committees of both parties. In a sign of Maffei’s delicate situation, former President Bill Clinton and Vice President Joe Biden both traveled to the area to hold rallies for him.

Maffei first won the seat in 2008, a presidential election year. In 2010, he lost the district to Republican Anne Marie Buerkle. But in a rematch two years later — another presidential election year — Maffei won the district back, which had been altered post redistricting.

In the race for governor, meanwhile, Democratic incumbent Andrew Cuomo’s lead over Republican Rob Astorino is shrinking in the district, the poll found.

Cuomo leads Astorino 43 percent to 39 percent, with 13 percent of support going to Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins. Earlier, Cuomo had been leading Astorino 44 percent to 32 percent in the 24th congressional district.

The poll of 704 likely voters was conducted from Oct. 22 through Oct. 24. It has a margin of error of 3.7 percent.