I hope you like seeing these mugs on television, because you're going to be seeing a lot of them this Fall.
Congratulations have to go out to Pat Tiberi and Steve Stivers.
They are totally dominating the money race. And as we always say, money doesn't win elections, but it sure does help.
Just ask Jennifer Brunner.
But these fundraising totals really are a case study in how this election season is going.
In one corner, we have the incumbent Republican facing a high profile challenger.
In the other corner, we have an incumbent Democrat facing a high profile challenger.
Each incumbent has had over a year and a half to build their war chest and prepare for their challenger.
So where do they stand?
Tiberi, the Republican incumbent, has $1.9 million cash on hand.
Mary Jo Kilroy, the Democrat incumbent and Stivers' opponent, has only $934k in the bank.
And the challengers?
Paula Brooks, Tiberi's Democratic challenger, has only $680k in the bank.
Steve Stivers, the Republican challenger, has $1.24 million cash on hand.
How can that possibly be?
Kilroy didn't have a primary opponent? Why is her cash on hand so low compared to Pat Tiberi?
Paula Brooks has been in the race longer than Steve Stivers, yet he has almost double her cash on hand.
And in each, the Republican is dominating the Democrat.
That's particularly amazing for Stivers considering how much less time he's had to fundraise relative to Kilroy. But then you look at how he pulled in more than twice the haul of Mary Jo Kilroy this quarter and it makes a bit more sense.
So why the disparities? It's very simple.
Contributors give money in tight races and to people they believe are going to win.
When you see disparity is when the outcome seems likely, one way or another.
Tiberi is leaving Brooks in the dust because contributors don't give Brooks much of a chance.
Stivers has already surpassed Kilroy's haul because contributors believe he is going to win.
Ultimately, Tiberi is going to win his race. That's why Paula Brooks never bothered to move into the 12th district.
Stivers race is clearly more competitive, and contributions from the DCCC will likely help Kilroy keep up with the Republican as each raises cash into the fall, but the writing on the wall is clear - Stivers has the momentum. And contributors know it.
Interestingly enough, targeted Ohio Democrats Charlie Wilson and Zack Space were two of the very few Congressmen who didn't release their fundraising totals with everyone else.
Releasing fundraising reports is a chance for campaigns to brag. Clearly, Wilson and Space don't have anything to brag about.
Their challengers, Bill Johnson and Bob Gibbs, respectively, still have a ways to go when it comes to raising money, but they are up against two Democrat incumbents in congressional districts that went to McCain in 2008. With the proper fundraising, they could pose a very serious threat this fall.