Millions of dollars have funneled into the Texas legislative campaigns over the last month as interest groups try to maximize their influence in the upcoming election. The donations, primarily from trial lawyers and business owners around the area, have come late so as to reduce the exposure of the donors themselves.
Some contribute late so that donators can ride the coattails of a winning campaign. As The Austin American-Statesman reports:
"Money flows late because late money follows the races that are being run effectively," said Republican consultant Ted Delisi. "Because we have two weeks of early voting and we have a lot of polling, you can understand which campaigns are gaining traction and which ones aren't, so you're not betting blindly."
Some question how effective a donation this late in the season can be because, as Delisi put it, “the election is 30 to 35 percent over right now." That being said, this last-second influx of cash can buy candidates a few more minutes of precious airtime on which they can further their campaigns.
National Republican interest groups have also been saturating the Lone Star State with campaign donations. As the Dallas Morning News reports:
At least $1.2 million recently flowed from Virginia-based American Crossroads, co-founded by longtime Bush strategist Karl Rove , to the Virginia-based Republican State Leadership Committee, run by former national GOP chairman Ed Gillespie.
Gillespie's group, in turn, has pumped at least $750,000 since late August into the in-state group Associated Republicans of Texas.
Readers who are curious about a campaign's funds are encouraged to go the Texas Ethics Commission.
Some of the notable new contributions include:
Texans for Insurance Reform- $86,000 to Rep. Valinda Bolton, D-Austin
House Democratic Camptain Committee- $39,000 to Rep. Valinda Bolton, D-Austin
Republican Party of Texas- $50,000 to Republican Paul Workman
Texans for Lawsuit Reform- $50,000 to Republican Paul Workman
House Democratic Committee- $50,000 to Rep. Diana Maldonado, D-Round Rock