Washington — Rep. Elizabeth Esty, D-5th District, who may have the toughest federal race in the state, raised more than $350,000 in the first three months of 2014, according to the latest reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.
Esty’s campaign ended the reporting period, March 31, with more than $1.1 million in cash on hand. Her GOP rival, businessman Mark Greenberg raised about $26,000 and loaned his campaign another $120,900. That brings Greenberg’s total loans to his campaign to more than $700,000. His campaign had $57,410 in cash on hand on March 31.
Some of Esty’s fundraising comes from two lawmakers who vied for Esty’s support in their quest for the top Democratic slot on the powerful House Energy and Commerce Committee.
Rep. Anna G. Eshoo, D-Calif., tried to better her chances for the job last month with the launch of a new political action committee, the Anna PAC, which donated $2,000 to Esty’s campaign.
Rep. Frank Pallone, D-N.J., has seniority on the panel and was in line to take the top Democratic slot on the committee with the retirements of Rep. Henry Waxman of California and John Dingell of Michigan. Pallone’s campaign gave Esty $1,000. Pallone’s Shore PAC also contributed $1,000 to her campaign.
But Esty announced her support for Eshoo, signing a letter last week that was distributed to other House Democrats that said, “Washington needs leaders who anticipate and can envision that which does not yet exist. Anna not only can fulfill this role, she has fulfilled this role as her record clearly shows. Effective. Innovative. Visionary. Devoted Democrat.”
Despite the lack of support from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, some say Pallone is considered a stronger candidate.The matter will be resolved when Democrats hold their reorganization elections in the next Congress.
Esty also received $9,300 from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and donations from some home state Democrats.
Former Sen. Chris Dodd contributed $1,000 from his old Senate campaign account; the campaign of Rep. John Larson, D-1st District, gave Esty $2,000 and his Synergy PAC donated another $1,500. Rep. Joe Courtney’s Husky PAC donated $1,000.
Jim PAC, established by Rep. Jim Himes, D-4th District, also donated $1,000 to Esty’s campaign.
Another GOP challenger, Sal Stephen Ross Lilienthal, of Kent, reported that he had about $18,000 in cash on hand as of March 31. Lilienthal has raised about $17,000 and loaned his campaign $15,000.