Fundraising Patterns

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Philadelphia mayoral candidate Tom Knox needs to fundraise like Oprah needs to get a paper route: he's a multi-millionaire who's more than capable of self-funding his race. But, he's still raising money so the Philadelphia Inquirer looks at who's giving: apparently much of his support is coming from out of state, and from Philly's wealthy suburbs.

 

Knox, who as of yet has not signed the Philadelphia Fair and Clean Elections pledge in support of full public financing of the city's elections, which 30 mayoral and city council candidates have signed, shows a markedly different pattern in his fundraising compared to his major challenger, Michael Nutter:

 

Nutter, neck and neck with Knox in one recent poll, has drawn far more individual donors than Knox, illustrating a broad base of support. In the first four months of this year, for instance, Nutter counted seven donors for every one who gave to Knox.

An Inquirer analysis of Knox's contributions - absent his own - shows that just $1 of every $3 he raised came from residents and businesses in the city. Far more - almost half of his $850,000 in donations - came from Philadelphia's high-priced suburbs, including Bryn Mawr and Haddonfield.


Nearly $163,000 of the total rolled in from out of state.

This will be an interesting election result to watch in terms of observing the impact of a broader or narrower fundraising base on public support; how important is having the most money, and how important is it to have money from the most people?