Tsunami of Democratic campaign cash

Despite its reputation as a solid “blue” state, national Democratic campaign cash is flowing into Minnesota in this election season.

The top race in the state is for Governor this year. The political website Real Clear Politics (RCP) has the race rated a “toss up,” albeit based on two polls that are both months old. Both houses of the state legislature and all eight members of Congress are on the ballot in November. RCP lists only three congressional races (1st, 2nd, and 3rd) as competitive in Minnesota this year.

So far this two-year cycle (through July 19), more than $37 million has been collected by Democrat party units and selected allies in the state.

The above totals do not include cash raised by individual candidates or other groups allied with Democrats in Minnesota. The above totals do include money transferred between groups, so there is some double-counting involved.

What is even more amazing than the totals is the size of individual contributions. Incumbent Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker gave $2 million to the Democratic Governors Association (DGA), which was deposited in the group’s Minnesota account. Now if the state race does not remain competitive, that money will likely be spent in other states. Still, the donation makes Pritzker, a Hyatt Hotel heir, officially the state’s largest political donor this cycle. He even edges out Rockefeller-oil heiress Alida Messinger:

Less well-known names include Gideon Friedman of Brooklyn, New York. He gave $1 million in a single check to something called “The PAC for Minnesota’s Future.” Friedman runs a company that owns thousands of apartment units across America, but apparently none in Minnesota.

Since the last reporting period ended on July 19, the money has kept flowing. Also giving to The PAC was Wendy Munger, daughter of Berkshire-Hathaway Vice Chair Charlie Munger. The younger Munger mailed in a $1 million check from her Pasadena, CA, home.

Edgar Bronfman, of the Seagram liquor fortune, gave $10,000 to the DGA. Also giving to the DGA was Edythe Broad, of the family behind The Broad art museum in Los Angeles, contributing $35,000. Gloria Page, the mom of Google’s Larry Page, gave $400,000 to the DGA over two days last month.

Shonda Rhimes, the Executive Producer of Grey’s Anatomy and other TV shows, gave $100,000 to the DLCC, promoting Democratic candidates to state legislatures.

Just yesterday, the national Democratic Governors Assocation donated $550,000 directly to the Alliance for a Better Minnesota (ABM), bypassing ABM’s usual fundraising vehicles.

The flood continues.