Beto O’Rourke Raises Nearly $40 Million As Polls Plunge

Bob Levey/Getty Images for Left/Right TV/LAURA BUCKMAN/AFP/Getty Images

Saagar Enjeti White House Correspondent
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Texas Senate Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke raised nearly $40 million in the third quarter of 2018, amassing an unprecedented campaign war chest heading into the 2018 midterm elections.

O’Rourke thanked his supporters in a video on Twitter. The money, he said, “came from 802,836 unique contributions. It’s going to give us the resources we need to finish this campaign as strong as we possibly can.”

“We are doing something absolutely historic — not just ensuring that we have the resources to run and to win, but to make sure that our democracy is once again powered by people, and only people,” he said in the video.

O’Rourke surpassed the previously set all-time record of $22 million raised by aspiring New York candidate Rick Lazio running against Hillary Clinton in 2000.

O’Rourke is running against Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz and has been the subject of intense national media attention. The aspiring Democratic candidate has seen a litany of fawning profiles about him in the nation’s premier publications despite lagging performance in the polls.

O’Rourke is currently lagging behind Cruz by nearly 7 points in the latest RealClearPolitics polling average. Data website Fivethirtyeight similarly gives Cruz a 77-percent chance of winning his race with a forecasted vote share for Cruz of 51.7 percent of the vote vs 46.8 percent  for O’Rourke.