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Dreier Refutes Report He Isn’t Fundraising

Contrary to a report this week in one of the newspapers in Rep. David Dreier’s (R) district, the Congressman was active on the fundraising front during the first quarter of this year — he just wasn’t raising much money for himself.

The Los Angeles Daily News correctly reported that Dreier raised a paltry $20,275 for his 26th district campaign account during the first three months of the year. Though Dreier finished with a hefty $2 million in cash on hand, the Daily News story emphasized that the Congressman raised less money in the first quarter than several of his colleagues.

But Dreier, the Rules Committee’s ranking member, said Wednesday that he was far from politically inactive during the period, noting that he raised $150,000 to help retire the National Republican Congressional Committee’s debt — now down to $7.9 million — and contributed another $150,000 from his campaign coffers for the same purpose.

Additionally, Dreier co-hosted and helped organize a Los Angeles fundraiser for the presidential campaign of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) at the home of Rock Schnabel, a former ambassador to the European Union. The March 5 event brought in more than $400,000.

“Between helping on debt retirement for my colleagues and Rudy Giuliani, we’ve been really focused on fundraising,” Dreier said in a telephone interview.

Dreier is now in the process of ramping up his own fundraising efforts.

The first fundraiser for his 26th district campaign account since the November elections is scheduled for today, with a similar event for his American Success political action committee set to occur later this month. The American Success PAC had $141,427 in the bank at the beginning of this year, according to the most recent Federal Election Commission report available.

Dreier’s move to address his own fundraising needs has not stopped him from continuing to aid his colleagues.

He recently appeared at a fundraiser in Chicago for Rep. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.), the former Speaker, and is scheduled to travel to Pennsylvania to raise money for Rep. Jim Gerlach (R). Dreier also recently contributed more than $10,000 to the Retain Our Majority Program.

ROMP is controlled by House Minority Leader John Boehner (Ohio), with its funds reserved for Republican incumbents deemed the most vulnerable.

Dreier won re-election to a 14th term in November with 57 percent of the vote, and at this point in the cycle is considered in good shape politically. Still, he could have a viable opponent on his hands in businessman Russ Warner (D), a longtime resident of the district whose son is an Iraq War veteran.

However, if Warner is going to give Dreier a serious challenge in the Republican-leaning seat, he is going to have to improve significantly on his first-quarter fundraising performance. From Jan. 1 to March 31, Warner raised just $3,385 to finish with $51,961 in the bank.
— David M. Drucker

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