Campaign Gravy Fattens Coffers

The usual suspects drop a load of late money into Keel campaign

Time for cash-counting: The final pre-election campaign finance filings, commonly known as the eight-day reports, are in (covering Sept. 26 to Oct. 25). In Travis County, GOP money slowed in two of the three House seats where Democrats face Republican challengers, with House District 48's Donna Howard and HD 50's Mark Strama comfortably outraising their opponents.

But HD 47 is a cash dumping ground, with almost $225,000 dropped into Donna Keel's campaign to remove incumbent Dem Valinda Bolton. On top of $140,000 from the Republican Party of Texas, there's $10,000 from GOP sugar daddy Jim Leininger, $10,000 from Bob "Swift boat" Perry's Empower Texans PAC, and $7,500 from Clayton Williams, the Midland oilman who lost the 1990 gubernatorial race to Ann Richards after making rape jokes. Bolton's not short of money either, with donations from a mix of industry and union political action committees and from fellow state reps including Jim Dunnam, D-Waco, and Garnet Coleman, D-Houston.

That's small change compared to Williamson County's HD 52 race, where Republicans have dropped more than half a million dollars into Bryan Daniel's war chest (including $224,000 from Texans for Lawsuit Reform PAC and $125,000 from Speaker Tom Craddick's Stars Over Texas PAC) against Dem hopeful Diana Maldonado. It's similar numbers for GOPer Tim Kleinschmidt in HD 17 ($60,000 from Perry, $110,000 from Stars Over Texas) against Democrat Donnie Dippel.

(Raised / Spent / Cash on hand)

HD 17

Donnie Dippel (D): $323,462 / $84,066 / $49,085

Tim Kleinschmidt (R): $492,483 / $249,254 / $102,642

HD 47

Valinda Bolton (D)*: $131,181 / $167,736 / $54,197

Donna Keel (R): $224,828 / $122,569 / $22,823

HD 48

Donna Howard (D)*: $53,411 / $13,944 / $100,202

Pam Waggoner (R): $6,350 / $11,780 / $7,702

HD 50

Mark Strama (D)*: $56,470 / $54,612 / $71,653

Jerry Mikus (R): $3,249 / $3,628 / $2,802

HD 52

Diana Maldonado (D): $304,649 / $365,697 / $102,316

Bryan Daniel (R): $587,550 / $319,922 / $87,719


A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More campaign finance
Follow the Money ... to the Polls
Follow the Money ... to the Polls
Election funds flow to and from candidates and PACs

Mike Clark-Madison, Oct. 19, 2018

Point Austin: Money and Minds
Point Austin: Money and Minds
Campaign finance reform is not a zero-sum equation

Michael King, April 20, 2012

More by Richard Whittaker
Into the Woods, In Search of Sator
Into the Woods, In Search of Sator
The secret family history behind Jordan Graham's supernatural horror

April 10, 2021

This Is Your Brain on Conspiracies As <i>Duncan</i> Hits Panic Fest
This Is Your Brain on Conspiracies As Duncan Hits Panic Fest
John Valley's comedy warns about ignoring conspiracy theorists

April 8, 2021


campaign finance, Jim Leininger

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle