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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (left) and House Minority Whip Steve Scalise. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Republicans' House campaign arm is putting up huge fundraising numbers as the party seeks to win back control of the lower chamber in the midterms.

Driving the news: The National Republican Congressional Committee raised nearly $80 million during the first six months of 2021, its best-ever first-half haul during an election off year, the committee tells Axios.

By the numbers: The NRCC's June fundraising total topped $20 million, and its total for the second quarter was more than $45 million.

  • According to the committee, those are monthly and quarterly records for an election off-year.
  • The NRCC heads into the back half of 2021 with $55 million in the bank, nearly double what it had at the same point in 2019.
  • Those huge numbers were bolstered by contributions from GOP leadership: the campaign committee for House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has given the NRCC $12.76 million this year. The committee for House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) has chipped in $8.39 million.

Between the lines: The political party controlling the White House has historically fared poorly in its president's first midterm election, and Republicans hope that trend holds and they regain majority next year after Democrats took control in 2018.

Go deeper

Pence seeks $18 million war chest

Former Vice President Mike Pence speaks in Des Moines in July. Photo: Rachel Mummey/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Mike Pence is positioning himself for a 2024 presidential run by aiming to raise a whopping $18 million this year, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: While polls show Donald Trump as an early Republican favorite, his former vice president also has been making moves to be a candidate. His group, Advancing American Freedom, is shaping up as a vehicle for testing the waters and building the infrastructure needed for a White House bid.

36 mins ago - World

UN chief urges U.S. and China to fix "dysfunctional relationship"

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres during a Sept. 13 press conference in Geneva. Photo: Fabrice COFFRINI / Coffini/AFP via Getty Images

United Nations chief Antonio Guterres raised concerns in an interview with AP, published Monday, of another Cold War between the U.S. and China.

Why it matters: Guterres made the comments ahead of this week's UN General Assembly in New York. Guterres told AP the U.S.-U.K. deal to provide nuclear-powered submarines to Australia "is just one small piece of a more complex puzzle ... this completely dysfunctional relationship between China and the United States."

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

FBI says human remains found in Wyoming likely Gabby Petito

Gabby Petito. Photo: FBI

Human remains found in Teton County, Wyoming, are "consistent with the description of" missing 22-year-old Gabby Petito, FBI Denver official Charles Jones said at a news conference Sunday.

Details: The cause of death had yet to be determined, but Jones said: "Full forensic identification has not been completed to confirm 100% that we found Gabby, but her family has been notified of this discovery." Authorities said they're continuing the search for her fiancé, Brian Laundrie.