Pennsylvania: Members Rally to Fund Embattled Holden

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Posted April 12, 2012 at 9:26pm

BETHLEHEM, Pa. — Rep. Tim Holden (D-Pa.) was burning up the phone lines to his Congressional colleagues in March, just a few weeks ahead of his competitive primary.

Dozens of Democratic House Members anted up more than $70,000 for Holden’s campaign, the Congressman estimated in an interview with Roll Call today.

“Absolutely, it’s a competitive race,” Holden said minutes before a county Democratic Party fundraiser. “We’re being outspent, there’s no question about it. We’re working like we’re 20 points behind, and we’re working every day at it.”

In Holden’s most competitive race in a decade, the Congressman faces attorney Matt Cartwright in the Democratic primary on April 24. Republicans overhauled Holden’s 17th district last year, adding vast amounts of new territory for the 10-term incumbent, including the Democratic strongholds of Wilkes-Barre and Scranton.

Holden is looking to his colleagues for help. He raised $438,700 from Jan. 1 through the end of the pre-primary reporting period on April 4. He reported $132,200 in cash on hand after spending $643,800 during the same time period. A few hours before the midnight deadline, Cartwright had yet to file his fundraising report online.

In the meantime, here’s a sample of Members who opened their campaign wallets for Holden last quarter, according to online fundraising records released today:

Reps. Robert Brady (D-Pa.), Jerry Costello (D-Ill.), John Larson (D-Conn.), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) and Colin Peterson (D-Minn.) donated $2,000 each to Holden’s re-election from their own campaign committees.

Rep. James Clyburn’s (D-S.C.) Bridge PAC gave $5,000 to Holden, while Rep. Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) gave $3,000 through his own PAC. The New Dem Coalition PAC transferred $5,000 to Holden as well.

Finally, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) gave Holden $2,000 on two separate occasions this year, and transferred $10,000 from his political action committee for the entire cycle.