NRCC raises $3.2 million in December, still lags far behind DRCC in cash on hand

Jon Ward Contributor
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The Republican fundraising arm for House races this year raised $3.2 million in December and paid off their debt, but still lags far behind their Democratic counterpart in cash on hand.

The National Republican Congressional Committee, which released its numbers Friday morning, has $2.67 million in its war chest, compared to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s $16.7 million.

The DCCC outraised the the NRCC with a total of $3.8 in December.

The NRCC spent $4.9 million, which included a payment of $2 million to eliminate their debt.

Under Rep. Chris Van Hollen’s leadership, the DCCC raised a total in 2009 of $55.7 million. The NRCC, which is chaired by Rep. Pete Sessions, raised a much smaller amount of $35.8 million in 2009.

The Democrats’ cash advantage is one of the few things working to their advantage in what is now guaranteed to be a difficult election cycle for them.

The Republican National Committee, chaired by Michael Steele, had more money than any of the big six fundraising arms at the start of 2009, with $22.8 million in its war chest. But the RNC spent $90 million through November, depleting its reserves to $8.7 million.

The Democratic National Committee, by comparison, began 2009 with $5.2 million but ended it (as of the latest reports) with $13.1 million.

The senatorial committees has been a better story for the GOP. Unlike 2008, when the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee outraised the National Republican Senatorial Committee by $68.4 million ($162 million to $94 million), the NRSC in 2009 raised $41.2 million to the DSCC’s $43.6 million.

NRSC spokesman Brian Walsh called it “a significant closing of the gap.”

Still, as Rep. Tom Cole put it to National Journal’s Reid Wilson, Republicans “clearly have more opportunities than cash right now.”

One thing to watch in the next few months is whether Republican fundraising experiences a rejuvenation following the loss of Ted Kennedy’s seat in Massachusetts.