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Monday, October 27, 2008

Numbers: Campaign Finance in District 8

Campaign finance numbers for District 8 legislative candidates (all links to PDF docs on the most informative website in Pierre, courtesy of Secretary of State Chris Nelson):
Candidate Total Donations (Direct and In-Kind) Total Individual Donations, i.e. not from party or PAC
(% of total donations)
Unitemized Individual Donations, i.e. $100 or less
(% of indiv donations)
Amount of own money spent
Russell Olson $59,984.25 $31,316
Scott Parsley $34010.65 $25,860.65
Mitch Fargen $15,740 $12,140
Jerry Johnson $7,118.25 $5,900
Gerry Lange $1,025 $175
Patricia Stricherz $2,938.25 $100


  1. Interesting, but as you would expect. For Russ: Mork, Schaefer, McDowell, Chapel, Prostrollo & Sinclair. At least no contribution was made by LAIC funds, which I half expected in my jaded little world.

  2. Thanks for the links. It is interesting to note the disparity of local giving to Scott Parsley versus the overwhelming local support to Russell Olson. Parsley only has 4 Madison donors, where Olson has 34 Madison donors. Why do so many out of towners want Parsley in Pierre. Who will he represent?

  3. Dear anonymous 3:36,

    To answer your questions. If you noticed that Parsley has a large amount of contributions under $100 which do not have to be itemized. I would venture to say that most people that support Parsley can't afford to dish out the big cash that Olson supporters can.

    When you are a Democrat in this area, big money is elsewhere. And in order to compete with the local money machine the big bucks have to come from out of town.

    Just remember, when it comes to election day it's who has the most votes, not the most supporters with a hefty checkbook.

  4. Hang on, Anon 3:36: District 8 is more than Madison. Scott also has $14K+ of unitemized donations, donations of under $100 that aren't required to be listed by address. Tell me how many of those small donors came from outside of District 8, then we can talk. Interesting also Scott has raised 12+ times as much in such small donations than Russ. And interesting that Russ has received $20K from the state party. Looks like there are plenty of out-of-District-8'ers (not to mention rich folks and party bosses) who want Russ in Pierre, too. Anyone care to break that one down for us?

  5. (Sorry to duplicate your idea, Anon 3:50! Great minds think alike! ;-) )

  6. Scott Parsley got a nice financial shot in the arm from former Senator, Tom Daschle to the tune of $1000, and a ton of support from DC-Virginia donors. They must expect big things in the future from Scott. One hurdle remains and his signs adorn ten times the number of yards and farms across District 8. Russell can't put this one in the bag yet, but the large woman is starting to howl.

  7. For comparison, I checked Scott Heidepriem's contributions, which total $164,000 so far for a State Senate Seat with about $46,000 left to spend prior to next Tuesday. Scott is a Democrat, used to be a Republican, who has tapped the big Democratic spenders and is still banking big dollars for a seat that pays the exact same as the seat Russell Olson and Scott Parsley are seeking. Hmmmm.

  8. Here's another eye opener. Cory is always complaining about the HUGE money advantage Republicans have over Democrats...Boo-Hoo. Today's Argus lists the wealthiest US Senators and Congressmen and guess what? The top four Senators are Democrats...Kerry, Kennedy, etc., while the top US Congressman is also a Dem. WHOA BABY! Pull the reins, Hoss! Have we all been sleeping while the Democrats became millionaires under our very noses? That argument must go away.

  9. Of the itemized donations listed, about 80% of Scott Parsley's are outside the district, as compared to around 40% for Olson. Over a third of Parsley's itemized donations are out-of-state. About 5% are out-of-state for Olson.

    I can see why locals like Prostrollo, Mork, Sinclair, Roeman, etc of Madison care about who is elected to Pierre. Makes me wonder why so many out-of-state and out-of-district people want Parsely in Pierre.


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