Jaime Harrison, the Democrat difficult Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, raised an astonishing $57 million within the third quarter, the best quarterly fund-raising complete for any Senate candidate in United States historical past and a part of an unlimited flood of cash pouring into Democratic campaigns.
From South Carolina to Maine to Alaska, Democratic challengers in races that can decide management of the Senate have been out-raising incumbents for months. But cash started to reach at extraordinary charges after Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died final month and Senate Republicans pledged to push by way of a substitute regardless of the slender window earlier than the election and their blockade of President Barack Obama’s nominee in 2016.
Now, the Republican Party is being compelled to mount costly defenses of seats it as soon as thought have been secure, stretching its assets to carry on to a Senate majority that it hopes will examine Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s energy if he wins in November.
Mr. Harrison didn’t a lot break a fund-raising report as shatter it: Before this 12 months, the most important quarterly haul for a Senate candidate was $38 million, raised by former Representative Beto O’Rourke of Texas throughout his problem to Senator Ted Cruz in 2018. Mr. Harrison blew previous that by almost $20 million, elevating greater than twice as a lot in a single quarter as Mr. Graham — who has not but introduced his third-quarter numbers — reported elevating within the earlier six quarters mixed.
Theresa Greenfield, the Democrat difficult Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa, reported elevating $28.7 million within the third quarter, a report for a Senate candidate in Iowa. In his race in opposition to Senator Cory Gardner of Colorado, John Hickenlooper raised $22.6 million, greater than 4 occasions his complete within the earlier quarter. And in North Carolina, Senator Thom Tillis’s challenger, Cal Cunningham, reported a report $28.3 million whilst he faces a late-breaking scandal over romantic texts he despatched to a lady who is just not his spouse.
Money, in fact, doesn’t assure victory; Mr. O’Rourke misplaced his race in 2018, and Mr. Graham nonetheless has a great likelihood of successful this one. Recent polls have proven a useless warmth: In a Quinnipiac University survey late final month, Mr. Graham and Mr. Harrison have been tied at 48 %, with 95 % of seemingly voters saying their minds have been made up.
But the truth that a race in South Carolina, which voted Republican in 2016 by greater than 14 share factors and has not despatched a Democrat to the Senate since 1998, is aggressive in any respect speaks to the extreme Democratic power nationwide, and to how rapidly a difficult 12 months for Republicans has become a possible blowout. Just a couple of months in the past, Republicans have been very assured that Mr. Graham would beat Mr. Harrison.
Mr. Harrison’s large fund-raising complete, a majority of which got here from out-of-state donors, additionally speaks to Democratic voters’ particular anger at Mr. Graham, who has turn into one in every of President Trump’s most vocal defenders and, as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is main the cost to verify Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, in a bald reversal of his earlier opposition to filling a emptiness in an election 12 months.
Trip Gabriel contributed reporting.