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Democrats Still Carry Large Debts From ’08

By the end of February, the National Republican Senatorial Committee had nearly cut in half the $5 million in debt that it carried over from the 2008 cycle, while its Democratic counterpart had paid off hardly any of the near $11 million that it owed at the end of last year.

According to Federal Election Commission fundraising reports filed last week, the NRSC had $2.7 million in debt at the end of last month, down from the $4 million that it carried at the end of January.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee was carrying $10.86 million in debt as of March 1, the same amount that it showed at the end of January.

Both the Democratic and Republican Senate committees raised $2.87 million each in February. The NRSC spent $2.84 million during that period (with a large portion of that going to paying off its debt) and ended the month with just more than $1 million in the bank.

The DSCC spent just more than $1 million and had nearly $3.7 million in cash on hand at the beginning of March.

At this same point in the 2008 cycle, the DSCC was carrying $6 million in debt while the NRSC was less than $800,000 in arrears.

On the House side, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee reported it raised $3.5 million and spent $2.3 million last month. As of March 1, the DCCC had $2.9 million in available cash but was carrying $15 million in debt. That’s $1 million less debt than the committee reported at the end of January but still a significantly larger burden than the $9.2 million in debt that it reported at the end of February 2007.

The National Republican Congressional Committee raised just more than $2 million and spent $1.3 million last month. That left the committee with more than $1.8 million in cash on hand and still carrying a debt of $6.4 million from last cycle. At the end of January, the NRCC reported it was carrying $6.5 million in debt. At this point in the 2008 cycle, the committee was carrying nearly $10.4 million in debt.

According to paperwork filed with the FEC, at least $85,000 of the money that the NRCC brought in last month came from Member transfers. Texas Rep. Lamar Smith led his GOP colleagues in contributions with a $15,000 check to the committee. Minority Whip Eric Cantor (Va.) transferred $12,000 to the NRCC in February.

Several Members also contributed money from their political action committees in February. They include the GOP’s Chief Deputy Minority Whip Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), who gave $12,000 through his Majority Committee PAC, and Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.), who also gave $12,000 through his Prosperity PAC.

The NRCC is expected to surpass its $5 million goal for Tuesday night’s annual fundraising dinner at the National Building Museum. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a former House Member and a rising star in the party, is the keynote speaker for the dinner.

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