US Democrats deploying funds to boost down-ballot candidates in non-battleground states

By Joseph Ax

(Reuters) – The national Democratic Party is deploying nearly $2 million to boost down-ballot candidates in 11 states where the presidential election is not expected to be competitive, targeting specific races from the U.S. Senate to state legislative contests in November’s elections.

The Democratic National Committee said the investments will go to state parties in nearly a dozen traditionally Democratic and Republican states such as Washington and Texas, where down-ballot candidates are unlikely to benefit from campaign visits or advertising by Democratic President Joe Biden and Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.

In Republican-dominated Indiana and Kansas, the funds are aimed at breaking Republican supermajorities in the state legislatures, according to a DNC announcement scheduled for Monday and seen by Reuters. In Democratic-leaning Maryland, the DNC will provide $250,000 to hire campaign staff and organizers to help Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Angela Alsobrooks in a race considered must-win for the Democrats to retain control of the Senate. 

Many of the grants are earmarked for specific state-level needs. In Minnesota, for instance, the DNC is providing funds to hire two staffers dedicated to voters who rent apartments, who can be difficult for campaigns to reach. In Nebraska, the home of a highly competitive U.S. House of Representatives contest, a $40,000 grant will pay for a rural organizer, while in South Dakota, the party will spend $70,000 to help register Native Americans to vote.

Democrats have outraised Republicans for most of the 2023-24 election cycle, and Biden’s campaign entered May with a significant cash edge. However, Trump and the Republican National Committee said last week they had raised a whopping $141 million in May, nearly doubling the prior month’s total after a flood of donations following Trump’s felony conviction.

(Reporting by Joseph Ax in Princeton, New Jersey, Editing by Matthew Lewis)


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