Budd’s surge comes after Trump picks him over former governor, Pat McCrory
North Carolina Representative Ted Budd’s fundraising numbers for his Senate campaign shot up after former President Donald Trump endorsed him last month, giving him a last-minute cash surge in the Republican primary.
EQV Analytics, a Democratic research firm, found that Mr Budd began out raising his opponents after Mr Trump’s endorsement at the state party’s convention in June, praising him as someone who “will fight like hell”.
According to his most recent Federal Election Commission filing, roughly 70 percent of the $950,000 Mr Budd raised came after the former president endorsed Budd, who was first elected to Congress in 2016. Before the endorsement, Budd had a little over 200 contributions during the fundraising quarter between April and the end of June. From June 5, the day Trump endorsed, until the end of the quarter, he received a slightly less than 500 contributions.
Bill Busa, president of EQV Analytics, said in an email that it filtered down contributors to only ones with first names to filter everything but individuals. It found that Budd had received $33,146 in April, $91,786 in May and $677,642 in June.
Mr Trump endorsed him against former Governor Pat McCrory.
“You can’t pick people that have already lost two races and who do not stand for our values,” Mr Trump said in June.
Mr McCrory ran for governor in 2008 and lost before winning the governorship in 2012 and then losing his reelection campaign in 2016 to Democrat Roy Cooper the same year Trump won.
Jonathan Felts, a senior adviser to Mr Budd, said the campaign eliminated its money disadvantage against Mr McCrory.
“Thirty seconds after President Trump endorsed Ted Budd, our fundraiser showed me her phone so I could see the emails alerting us to new donations,” Mr Felts said in an emailed statement to the Independent.
“Donors who had been sitting it out or leaning toward McCrory, and sending us to voicemail the week before, were proactively calling the campaign after the endorsement. Ultimately, we out raised McCrory following the endorsement.”
At the same time, Mr McCrory still raised more overall than Mr Budd during the quarter, raising about $1.2 million. Also, Mr. Budd lent his campaign $250,000 on June 30.
The current Republican primary is a race to fill the seat being vacated by outgoing Senator Richard Burr, who voted to convict Mr Trump during his second impeachment trial.