The two candidates on the November ballot for governor have raised a combined $23 million for their candidate committees. About 91% of that amount went to Gov. Gavin Newsom.
Who has raised the most?
Newsom has, by a wide margin.
After he easily survived a recall attempt last year, Newsom, a Democrat, is running for a second term as governor, and he led in the primary with 56% of the vote. Newsom has received 24,759 donations averaging $840 each.
Republican Brian Dahle — is a farmer and state senator from the small Northern California town of Bieber. Dahle has received 3,263 donations averaging $650 each.
Newsom saw an increase in contributions right before the primary although he began fundraising for his reelection in 2018. Dahle started his fundraising earlier this year and has raised a small fraction in contrast to his competition.
Where is the money coming from?
Large amounts of Newsom’s contributions came from major cities and large population bases in the Bay Area and Los Angeles area. Newsom received 15% of his contributions from out of state — much of that came from Texas and the East coast, including New York and Washington D.C. Dahle’s contributions came mostly from the northeastern parts of the state, like Placerville, around California Senate District 1, which he represents. These are the same areas he carried in the primary.
Who is supporting the candidates?
Candidate committees for the governor’s race have contribution limits of $64,800. There were 63 donors who contributed the maximum amount to Newsom, and four who contributed the maximum to Dahle.
The donors who contributed the maximum amount to Newsom include executives of tech, entertainment, real estate and agriculture companies. Some notable contributors are Reed Hastings, co-founder of Netflix; film director Chuck Lorre; Sean Parker and his wife, Alexandria; Steven Spielberg; Lynda Resnick of the Wonderful Co.; both parents of Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis; Anheuser-Busch; and several Native American tribes.
Three of the donors who gave a maximum to Dahle are members of the Gomez family, owners of Mountain F. Enterprises, of El Dorado County, which provides tree-trimming services for utility companies. The fourth is president of High Sierra Industries, a trucking company in Placerville.
How is the money being spent?
In addition to the amount Newsom’s candidate committee raised, it also has $15.7 million in funds, including transfers from previous committees and other miscellaneous transactions. Newsom has spent $4.5 million on TV and cable airtime and production costs. His next largest expenses have been campaign consultants and fundraising events.
In addition to the amount Dahle’s candidate committee raised, it also has $61,300 in funds, including transfers from previous committees and other miscellaneous transactions. Dahle’s biggest spending category was campaign literature and mailings. His next largest expenses were campaign consultants and information technology costs.
What other groups are supporting the candidates?
Various outside committees have spent around $234,700 in support of Newsom, including $150,000 from California Statewide Law Enforcement Assn. Independent Expenditure Committee. There were no outside committees spending on behalf of Dahle.