"In just seven weeks, Clay Aiken’s campaign raised more in individual contributions than his primary opponents did throughout the entire duration of the 12-week quarter, according to Federal Election Commission (FEC) first quarter fundraising reports. Aiken reported $233,000 in total fundraising and received almost $210,000 in individual contributions in a 7-week period, after announcing his candidacy midway through the quarter on Feb. 5. The quarter began Jan. 1, 2014 and ended March 31, 2014.
Democratic primary opponent Keith Crisco reported $202,000 in contributions throughout the full 12-week period. Crisco loaned his campaign an additional $266,500 and has just $38,000 cash on hand. Aiken’s campaign averaged $30,000 in weekly contributions since his Feb. 5 announcement, while Crisco’s averaged under $17,000 since the quarter began on Jan. 1. Toni Morris’s report could not be found on the FEC website as of 10 a.m. on Wednesday.
“This is a tremendous performance for a first-time candidate in just seven weeks,” said Aiken campaign senior adviser Gene Conti. “Even more striking is the grassroots support that Clay has received. More than 2,000 contributions have come from individual donors, many of them small amounts donated online.”
Conti said, “This report demonstrates that Clay has what it takes to win in November,” including:
· 2,052 individuals contributed to Aiken’s campaign in the first quarter.
· The average contribution was $101.85.
· Online fundraising accounted for $88,335 of the total.
The campaign finished the quarter with $124,925 cash on hand. “We are in a position to make a strong push before the primary,” Conti said.
He added, “We will have the resources we need to carry Clay’s message throughout the district. Clay is a genuine political outsider who can take on the incumbent and then take on the dysfunction and partisanship in Washington. He will represent all the people of the Second District as a Member of Congress.”
The campaign raised over $70,000 in its first week following Aiken’s candidacy announcement on Feb. 5. Early fundraising was bolstered by Aiken’s 5-minute announcement video that now has over 600,000 views on YouTube.
Political experts are optimistic about Aiken’s fundraising ability through the duration of the campaign cycle. Following an hour-long meeting with Aiken last week, the nonpartisan and highly respected Cook Political Report took NC’s Second District out of the “Solid Republican” column, noting that Aiken is a serious and qualified candidate and has the potential to raise a significant amount of money in a political environment that is tough for many other candidates.
“In a year when other Democrats in considerably red districts are struggling for money and voters' attention, Aiken shouldn't have a problem obtaining either,” wrote Cook Political Report House Editor Dave Wasserman."
A Press Release