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June 3rd   , 2024                  Len’s Political Note #647 Who Should I give money to? Part I. Save the Senate

2024                                        General Election

Five months left.  These are my suggestions for who to give money to.  These are my suggestions right now.  A reader asked me about my top candidates to give money to.  With only five months left, I thought I should provide an answer to everyone.  There are races with primaries which will have to wait.   There will be changes and additions.

As important as state governance is, and it is important, if I must focus somewhere it is on the federal government.  The federal government affects us all.  The presidency, the Senate, and the House.

The Presidency
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.

There could be presidential election years where it did not matter whether or not you donated to the presidential campaign.  Not this year.

  • 2020 was relatively close. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won: 51.3 – 46.8.  The electoral college was 306-232, but several states were close enough that the electoral college could have gone the other way.
  • As of 4/30/24, since 1/1/21, the Biden-Harris campaign had received $195 million. The Trump campaign had received $121 million.  That is probably an accurate reflection of the relative financial strength of the two campaigns.
  • In May, based on a quick count, relying on Likely voters when available, looking at national polls, head to head and not including third party candidates when possible, I I found (from the website 538) one poll with Biden leading, and 4 polls with Trump leading.
  • DONATE TO JOE BIDEN AND KAMALA HARRIS See Len’s Political Note #605

The Senate

The Senate is precarious.  Currently, there are 49 Republicans, 48 Democrats, 3 Independents all of whom support the Democrats being in control.  In 2024, Democrats will almost certainly lose their seat in West Virginia, leaving them, effectively, with 50 seats; enough to control the Senate if Joe Biden is President.  Several vulnerable Democratic seats are up for election.  The number of vulnerable Republican seats ranges between few and none.  First order of business:  Protect the vulnerable Democratic seats.

Len’s Top Five to give money to.

  • Montana: Incumbent Jon Tester.

    • This is a heavily Republican state. In 2020, Republican Steve Daines defeated ex Governor Steve Bullock 55-45; In 2018, Jon Tester was elected with 50.3% of the vote vs Matt Rosendale’s 46.8%
    • As of March 31, having raised $33.2 million, Jon Tester had $12.7 million remaining. On the same date, Republican businessman Tim Sheehy had $1.9 million of the $8.4 million he had raised.  A multimillionaire, he can spend his own pocket money.
    • The most recent polls were in March. One found Tester leading by 2; the other found him behind by 3.
    • DONATE TO JON TESTER. See Len’s Political Note #550
  • Michigan: Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin (Open Democratic seat)
    • In 2020, Democrat Gary Peters defeated Businessman (now congressman) John James 49.9-48.2; in 2018, Democrat Debbie Stabenow (who is retiring) defeated Businessman John James 52.3-45.8
    • As of March 31, having raised $16.1 million, Elissa Slotkin had $8.6 million; probable Republican nominee, former Congressman Mike Rogers had $1.4 million of the $2.9 million he had raised. Both are underfunded, Rogers is very underfunded, but there are PACs.
    • Polls in late April and May  found Slotkin leading by 2 to 4 points.
    • DONATE TO ELISSA SLOTKIN. See Len’s Political Note #589
  • Ohio: Incumbent Sherrod Brown


  • This is a heavily Republican state. In 2022, Republican businessman and author JD Vance defeated Congressman Tim Ryan 53 – 46.9; in 2018 Sherrod Brown defeated Congressman Jim Renacci 53.4 – 46.6.
  • As of March 31, having raised $40 million, Sherrod Brown had $16 million available; Businessman Bernie Moreno had $2.1 million of the $11.3 million he had raised.
  • March polls (the most recent available) show Sherrod Brown leading by between 4 and 13 points.
  • DONATE TO SHERROD BROWN. See Len’s Political Note #556
  • Nevada: Incumbent Jacky Rosen
    • In 2022, incumbent Democratic Senator Catherine Cortez Masto defeated former Republican Attorney General by 48.8 – 48; In 2018, Democratic Congresswoman Jacky Rosen defeated Incumbent Republican Senator Dean Heller 50.4 – 45.4
    • As of March 31, having raised $24.3 million, Jacky Rosen had $13.2 million; Wounded war veteran Sam Brown had $2.3 million of the $5.4 million he raised. He does have a local “angel” multimillionaire supporting the campaign.
    • Two polls in May found Jacky Rosen leading double digits, one found her even with Brown.
    • DONATE TO JACKY ROSEN. See Len’s Political Note #564
  • Maryland: County Executive Angela Alsobrooks
    • This is a heavily Democratic state. In 2022, Incumbent Democrat Chris Van Hollen defeated Republican Businessman Chris Chaffee 65.8 – 35.7; In 2018, Incumbent Ben Cardin (now retiring) defeated pastor and academic Tony Campbell 64.9 – 30.3
    • As of April 24, having raised $7.8 million, Angela Alsobrooks had $1.9 million; the very popular (80% favorability upon leaving office) former Republican governor Larry Hogan had $1.8 million of the $3.1 million he raised.
    • March polls showed Hogan leading by 4 to 18 points. April and May polls showed Angela Alsobrooks leading by 2 and 10 points.  If she can consolidate a double digit lead, she can be removed from this list; but not yet.
    • DONATE TO ANGELA ALSOBROOKS. See Len’s Political Note #643
  • Other vulnerable Democratic Senators and seats
    • Arizona Congressman Ruben Gallego seeking an Open Independent seat against Republican former television personality Kari Lake. Polls in May show him leading by as little as 4 points and as much as 13 points. Democrats have won the last two Senate races. DONATE TO RUBEN GALLEGO See Len’s Political Note #544
    • Incumbent Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin is in an evenly divided state. She is running against Eric Hovde, a California businessman returned home to Wisconsin who has made rookie mistakes. Polls in May show her leading by 7 and 12 points. She has $10.3 million of the $26.4 million she raised. In 2022, however, Wisconsin reelected a very conservative Republican US Senator. DONATE TO TAMMY BALDWIN See Len’s Political Note #570
    • Incumbent Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey Jr. is in a competitive state. He is running against Connecticut businessman David McCormick returned home to Pennsylvania who already lost one Senate race.  Bob Casey is leading in the polls, though in the most recent poll in May, by only 2 points.  He has $11.9 million of the $23.8 million he raised.  Multimillionaire has $6.4 million of the $11.1 million he raised; though he has pockets full of money if he wants so spend it.  DONATE TO BOB CASEY.  See Len’s Political Note #581
  • Are challengers to Republican Incumbent Senators worth the investment? If so, which ones?
    • Nebraska Trade Unionist and Independent candidate Dan Osborn
      • This is a heavily Republican state. In 2020, Incumbent Ben Sasse defeated Chris Janicek 63 – 24.  Janicek’s scandal led the Democratic party to withdraw support.  In 2018 Incumbent Deb Fischer defeated State Senator Jane Raybould 58 – 39.
      • As of April 24, having raised $800,000, Dan Osborn had $400,000; Incumbent Deb Fischer had $2.7 million of the $5.7 million she raised.
      • Back in November, a union funded poll showed Dan Osborn leading Fischer 40 – 38. An April poll, found Fischer leading 37- 33
      • DONATE TO DAN OSBORN. See Len’s Political Note #614
    • Congressman Colin Allred of Texas
      • This is still a Republican state. John Cornyn’s 10 point win in 2020 was not as close as Ted Cruz’s 2 ½ point win against Beto O’Rourke in 2018.
      • As of March 31, having raised $28 million, Ted Cruz had $10.5 million; Incumbent Ted Cruz had $9.4 million of the $51.2 million he raised.
      • April polls showed Ted Cruz leading by 5 to 13 points.
    • DONATE TO COLIN ALLRED. See Len’s Political Note #560
  • Other Democratic challengers
    • Veteran and US military analyst Lucas Kunce of Missouri is running in a state where Democratic candidates have lost by between 6 an 16 points. Incumbent Republican Josh Hawley had a $5.4 to $3.3 million dollar lead on March 31.  In a March poll, Hawley was leading by 14 points. Can Hawley sustain those numbers as his creepy version of masculinity remains central to Kunce’s campaign?  DONATE TO LUCAS KUNCE See Len’s Political Note #538
    • Former Congresswoman Debbie Mucarsel-Powell of Florida in a state where a Democratic challenger lost by 15 points and a Democratic incumbent lost by a fraction of a point. Multimillionaire Incumbent Republican Rick Scott (aside from his own money) had $3.8 million to Mucarsel-Powell’s $2.8 million on March 31. A Republican funded poll in May showed her behind by double digits; another poll showed her behind by single digits. You would think those figures would have declined after Scott proposed requiring a vote on Medicare every five years.  DONATE TO MUCARSEL-POWELL.  See Len’s Political note #598
    • State Representative Gloria Johnson of Tennessee is running against incumbent Marsha Blackburn in a state that Republicans have carried by 10 to 25 points. On March 31, Blackburn had $8.5 million to Johnson’s $2 million.  A May poll showed Blackburn leading by 11 points.  That may decline now that Blackburn appears to have joined the Republicans who want to outlaw contraception.  DONATE TO GLORIA JOHNSON.  See Len’s Political Note # 622
    • Psychologist Valerie McCray of Indiana is running against Republican Congressman Jim Banks. In recent Senate elections, a Democrat lost by 20 points and an incumbent Democrat lost by 6.  On March 31, Republican Jim Banks had $2.9 million; Valerie McCray had $1,000.  The only poll was last fall. It found Banks leading by 9 points.  DONATE TO VALERIE MCCRAY.
  • Congressional candidates in the next piece. To learn more about the candidates, click on the links to Len’s Political Note about each of them.