Missouri Senate: Schmitt Raised $646,301 in Third Quarter
October 11, 2021 · 8:20 PM EDT
Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt, one of the leading contenders to replace retiring Republican Roy Blunt in the U.S. Senate next year, raised $646,301 in the third fundraising quarter of this year. The Glendale Republican entered October with $1,114,774 in his campaign account, according to numbers obtained by Inside Elections.
Schmitt had raised $1.3 million in the second quarter and had ended June with $1,102,472 in the bank, meaning that his campaign spent nearly all of the cash it raised in July, August and September.
The Missouri Senate race is currently rated Solid Republican by Inside Elections. But it has the potential to develop into a serious headache for Republicans hoping to take back the Senate if former Gov. Eric Greitens, who resigned from office in 2018 while under investigation for sexual assault and financial crimes, is the party’s nominee. Greitens’ serious baggage could create an opening for Democrats despite the state’s strong partisan lean.
Schmitt is one of five major candidates vying for the GOP nomination to succeed Blunt. In addition to him and Greitens, the field also includes 4th District Rep. Vicky Hartzler, 7th District Rep. Billy Long, and personal injury lawyer/2020 RNC speaker Mark McCloskey.
A Sept. 8-9 survey by Remington Research Group for the Missouri Scout newsletter showed a tight race between Schmitt (28 percent) and Greitens (27 percent), with Hartzler (17 percent) a clear third, and Long (8 percent) and McCloskey (5 percent) further back. Remington Research Group’s parent company, Axiom Strategies, is part of Schmitt’s consulting team.
None of the other candidates’ third-quarter fundraising numbers are public yet. At the end of the last quarter, on June 30, Hartzler led the pack with $1.4 million on hand. Long had not announced yet but reported $559,000 in his House campaign account. McCloskey reported $167,000 in the bank and Greitens reported $135,000.
The Super PAC supporting Schmitt, Save Missouri Values, recently announced it raised $832,000 this past quarter but did not release a cash-on-hand figure. It had $1.5 million in the bank on June 30 and previously had received six-figure contributions from Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel and Missouri beer magnate August Busch.
Schmitt isn’t the only one with wealthy outside allies. Richard Uihlien, the billionaire GOP mega-donor, seeded a pro-Greitens Super PAC, Team PAC, with $2.5 million earlier this summer. That group has not released any third-quarter numbers.
Most of the state’s biggest Democratic names are sitting the race out in a sign of just how unfavorable Missouri has become to the party. The two major candidates for the Democratic nomination are former state Sen. Scott Sifton and Marine veteran Lucas Kunce. Kunce recently reported raising $840,000 in the third quarter. Sifton has not yet announced his haul.
A more detailed analysis of the Missouri Senate race can be found in the Sept. 23 issue of Inside Elections.