Mar 11, 2022 - Politics

Mayor Bowser holds fundraising advantage in third-term bid

From left, side-by-side photos of Robert White, Muriel Bowser and Trayon White

From left: Council member Robert White Jr., Mayor Muriel Bowser and Council member Trayon White Sr. Photos: Michael Robinson Chávez, Jahi Chikwendiu, Bonnie Jo Mount/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Mayor Muriel Bowser has fundraised three times as much as her top rival in her bid for a third term, according to an Axios analysis of new campaign finance reports.

Why it matters: Mayoral hopefuls and dozens of candidates running for office in the District filed their campaign finance reports due late last night. The numbers show where candidates stand 102 days until primary day.

Driving the news: Like most other candidates this year, Bowser is using public financing, which matches small-dollar contributions from city residents with five times the amount in taxpayer funds. Axios calculated the cash-on-hand totals after tallying the expected public match and subtracting expenses reported in filings.

  • Bowser would have $3.41 million cash on hand, after public funds. She raised a projected $787,200 in under six weeks.
  • White raised $386,205 this cycle and would have about $1.06 million cash on hand. Despite trailing the incumbent, his supporters note that he has nearly the same number of small-dollar donors as the mayor. The campaign cited "grassroots momentum."
  • The campaign finance report of a third rival who has raised relatively little so far, Ward 8 council member Trayon White, was not yet online.

In the attorney general’s race, Ward 5 council member Kenyan McDuffie surpassed $1 million raised. He hit the maximum match from public financing for his race, which is about $825,000.

  • Brian Schwalb would have $697,700 cash on hand after public funding. He earned a coveted endorsement yesterday from Karl Racine, the Washington Post reported. Racine, the city’s first elected attorney general, is not seeking a third term.
  • Bruce Spiva, who personally loaned his campaign $300,000, reported raising an additional $143,500 with traditional fundraising.

For D.C. Council chair, incumbent Phil Mendelson is not using public financing and reported having $466,600 cash on hand.

  • His opponent, Erin Palmer, is projected to have $275,400 cash on hand with public funding.

Meanwhile, Matt Frumin appeared to take the fundraising lead in the D.C. Council race in Ward 3. He is projected to have $126,400 cash on hand with public funding.

  • Phil Thomas would have $80,400; Tricia Duncan with $67,400; Ben Bergmann with $53,850 (he received the maximum $50 from John Podesta); and Monika Nemeth with $2,200.
  • Deidre Brown, who is not using public financing, reported raising nearly $34,000 and having $10,000 left on hand.

In Ward 5, another competitive D.C. Council ward race, Zachary Parker has outraised opponents, with $256,800 total since launching.

  • Faith Hubbard is close behind with $218,700 raised. She has about $2,400 more cash on hand than Parker.

🗳 Of note: All registered voters will be sent a mail-in ballot starting May 16, according to the D.C. Board of Elections. Drop-off boxes open up May 27.


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Washington D.C..


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Washington D.C. stories

No stories could be found

Washington D.C.postcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Washington D.C..


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more