Linda McMahon’s new Senate campaign is pledging not to repeat the unprecedented onslaught of campaign mail she launched in 2010. So, that begs the question: Exactly what did she spend on direct mail last time?
Try $12 million.
That’s how much Majority Strategies was paid by McMahon, according to her year-end filing with the Federal Elections Commission. Remember when McDonald’s bragged “1 billion served?” With all its campaigns, this firm says it is responsible for a half billion mailed.
For a little context, her victorious opponent, Democrat Richard Blumenthal, spent $8.7 million on his entire campaign in 2010.
Here is a rough outline of how McMahon, the GOP nominee and former chief executive officer of World Wrestling Entertainment spent $50 million of her own money in 2010.
Not surprisingly, 76 percent went for ads, either in the mail or on the air. Besides the $12 million spent on mail, she gave $26.9 million to Scott Howell & Co., whose primary duties were producing television commercials and buying time to air them.
Her campaign payroll was $1.6 million. Top pay: $220,496 to her manager, David Cappiello, and $175,677 to her communications strategist, Ed Patru. Those sums include some reimbursements for expenses.
And the payroll amount doesn’t include consulting fees like the $816,000 paid to Sullivan & LeShane, the Hartford lobbying and public-relations business founded by her political adviser, Patrick Sullivan.
Autumn E-Media and Autumn Productions of Las Vegas were paid $949,000. Their specialty: online strategies.
Polling cost $1 million.
Verizon cellular bills came to $174,106.
Campaign buttons, bags, lawn signs and other promotional items supplied by Barker Specialty Advertising Co. of Cheshire cost $151,109.
T-shirts and caps with the Linda logo were supplied by Show Your Colors of Watertown for $143,356.
The campaign paid $51,190 to the Connecticut Convention Center and the $141,524 to the adjacent Marriott in downtown Hartford. The GOP convention was the convention center, and McMahon had her election night party at the Marriott.
Staging at various events was a $77,340 line item. A supplemental report filed early this year lists $303,866 for “election night staging” paid to her media consultant, Scott Howell & Co.
The Apple store at Westfarms Mall was paid $37,589.
And Bryan Cave & Affiliates, a law firm in St. Louis whose specialties include elections law, collected $240,539 as of last December. It was paid another $45,197 in the first four months of 2011.
McMahon has not announced a budget for 2012.