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For Immediate Release
March 3, 2004
Contact: Bob Biersack
Ian Stirton
George Smaragdis
Kelly Huff

WASHINGTON ? Congressional campaign fundraising totaled $390.1 million in 2003, an increase of 32.2% when compared to 2001, as reflected in year-end reports analyzed by the Federal Election Commission (FEC).  This is the first year of fundraising under the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA), often referred to as the McCain-Feingold bill.  One of the changes in the new law doubled the individual contribution limit to $2,000 per candidate per election.

Much of the increase was found in U.S. Senate campaigns, where candidates raised a total of $166.7 million in 2003, up 72% from 2001 levels.  During 2003 Senate candidates reported disbursements of $66.5 million, more than twice what was spent during the off year of the previous cycle.  Senate candidates ended 2003 with a cash balance of $153.3 million. 

Comparisons between election cycles are problematic, however, because different states hold Senate elections each cycle, and many small population states held Senate races in 2002.  This year, by contrast, California, New York, and Pennsylvania have Senate campaigns, and Illinois and Florida among other states have open seat Senate races.  Also, some states have earlier Congressional primaries this year to correspond with Presidential primary elections and this may account for some of the increase financial activity in 2003.

Candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives raised $223.4 million during 2003, an increase of 12.7% from 2001 levels.  These campaigns spent $120.8 million, an increase of 12.8% over 2001.   They entered the election year with cash-on-hand of $221.4 million, up from the $202.2 million balance reported at the end of 2001.

The following table compares non-election year activity (reported in millions of dollars) for all Senate and House campaigns during the last nine election cycles.

Year Receipts Disbursements Cash on Hand





































Contributions from individuals remain the largest source of funds for Congressional candidates.  The $237.6 million raised from individuals was 40% more than in 2001 and represented 61% of all fundraising during the year, up from 58% in 2001.  Contributions from PACs and other candidate committees, whose limits were left largely unchanged under BCRA, rose 11% to $101.5 million.  This represented 26% of all receipts, down from 31% in 2001.  Funds from candidates themselves totaled $33.1 million or 8% of all fundraising.   While there was more dependence on individuals in 2003, the breakdown of sources of receipts is very similar to 1999, suggesting that new limits have not significantly changed candidates? reliance on types of donors in the first year of the new law?s implementation.

This release contains summaries for 2004 cycle Congressional campaigns, comparisons over the past six election cycles, a listing for each Senate candidate covering the full six-year cycle and each House candidate for 2003.  Also provided are top 50 lists for Senate and House campaigns for receipts, disbursements, cash-on-hand, debts, and the major sources of receipts.


1. Figures in the first two tables and the detailed listings of candidates cover from January 1, 2003, or whenever the campaign registered during the year, through December 31, 2003.

2. Net receipt and net disbursement figures are total receipts and total disbursements, as reported by the campaigns, minus any money transferred between committees of the same campaign.

3. Columns entitled ?Contrib from Other Cmte?s? are monies contributed to campaigns by PACs and other committees as reported by the campaigns.  Other committees include primarily committees of other candidates.

4. On the Senate listings, the column titled ?Candidate Support? includes contributions by the candidate as well as loans made or guaranteed by the candidate.  The column titled ?Trans from Other Auth.? Includes moneys transferred from House committees of candidates for the Senate, as well as proceeds from joint fundraising activity among several candidates or committees.  Contributions from individuals and PACs made through these joint fundraising efforts are NOT included in the ?Individual Contributions? or ?Other Cmte Contributions? columns.

5. Open-seat races are those in which the incumbent did not seek reelection.

6. Some House members who are or were running for the Senate in 2004 changed their former House campaign committees into their Senate campaign committees.  Financial activity related solely to their Senate campaigns cannot be isolated. (See Deutsch [FL])

7. Several candidates report significant debts, at least some of which were incurred in previous election cycles.  These include:

  • Darrell Issa (CA)
  • Erskine Bowles (NC)
  • Robert Bennett (UT)
  • James Cooper (TN)
  • Christopher Chocola (IN)
  • Rahm Emanuel (IL)
  • Richard Renzi (AZ)
  • Robert Beauprez (CO)
  • Terry Everett (AL)

 9.    Party abbreviations in the listing of House campaigns are:

DEM - Democrat LIB - Libertarian
DFL - Democrat/Farmer/Labor (MN) PAF - Peace and Freedom
REP - Republican IND - Independent
RTL - Right to Life LBL - Liberal


  • Off Year Activity of 2004 Congressional Campaigns [excel]  [pdf]
  • Off Year Financial Activity of Senate Candidates ? 1994-2004 [excel]  [pdf]
  • Off Year Financial Activity of House Candidates ? 1994-2004 [excel]  [pdf]
  • Six Year Financial Summary for 2004 Senate Campaigns through December 31, 2003 [excel]  [pdf]
  • Senate Top 50?s
    • 2003 Top 50 Senate Campaigns by Receipts       [excel]  [pdf]
    • 2003 Top 50 Senate Campaigns by Contributions from Individuals  [excel]  [pdf]
    • 2003 Top 50 Senate Campaigns by Contributions from PACs and Other Committees  [excel]  [pdf]
    • 2003 Top 50 Senate Campaigns by Contributions and Loans from the Candidate  [excel]  [pdf]       
    • 2003 Top 50 Senate Campaigns by Disbursements  [excel]  [pdf]       
    • 2003 Top 50 Senate Campaigns by Cash on Hand  [excel]  [pdf]        
    • 2003 Senate Campaign Debts  [excel]  [pdf]
  • House Top 50?s       
    • 2003 Top 50 House Campaigns by Receipts  [excel]  [pdf]
    • 2003 Top 50 House Campaigns by Contributions from Individuals  [excel]  [pdf]
    • 2003 Top 50 House Campaigns by Contributions from PACs and Other Committees  [excel]  [pdf]
    • 2003 Top 50 House Campaigns by Contributions and Loans from the Candidate  [excel]  [pdf
    • 2003 Top 50 House Campaigns by Disbursements  [excel]  [pdf]      
    • 2003 Top 50 House Campaigns by Cash on Hand  [excel]  [pdf]        
    • 2003 Top 50 House Campaigns by Debts Owed  [excel]  [pdf]
    • 2003 House Campaigns by State and District   [excel]  [pdf]