Afternoon Jolt

Today's Winners: Republican State Senate Candidates (Again)

In last-minute donation news today: The Washington State Republican Party gave another $24,000 to their gubernatorial candidate, Rob McKenna.

They also downloaded big money to two GOP candidates who are challenging incumbent Democratic state senators—$25,000 to Dawn McCravey, who's trying to oust education chair Sen. Rosemary McAuliffe (D-1, Bothell) and $12,500 to Barbara Bailey, who's trying to beat transportation chair Sen. Mary Margaret Haugen (D-10, Camano). These are two of the races, out of six closely watched contests, that are in play as the Republicans try to shrink the Democrats 27-22 advantage.

The Republicans also gave a minimal $2,600 to Brad Toft, who's running for the open state senate seat in the 5th Legislative District—another one of the six districts in play. The 5th leans Republican, but thanks to a problematic resume, Toft isn't a shoo-in. He's running against a successful local franchisee, Democrat Mark Mullet.

The Democrats threw down in the governor's race, topping the WSRP's $24,000 donation to McKenna with a $50,000 contribution to their candidate, Jay Inslee.

Yesterday, we noted that the Republican senate caucus was pouring last-minute cash into the set of six races. They got a little relief today: Boeing ($900), Verizon ($3,500), 7-11 ($2,500), and the Swinomish Tribal Council ($5,000) all reported last-minute donations to the Leadership Council, the GOP senate caucus political committee.

The Republicans also threw $2,000 to Clint Didier,  2010's Tea Party antagonist to GOP standard bearer Dino Rossi. Didier is running a long-shot race against liberal Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark.

Today's Other Winner: Jay Inslee, but Not the Democratic Senate Candidates

The Democrats gave $2,000 to Maureen Judge (who's challenging Republican state Sen. Steve Litzow in another one of the six races, this one in Mercer Island), but otherwise didn't match in the senate contests.

But they did throw down in the governor's race, topping the WSRP's $24,000 donation to McKenna with a $50,000 contribution to their candidate, Jay Inslee. In all, Inslee has gotten more than $2 million from the party while McKenna's gotten about $1.7 million.


Also: This afternoon, Washington United for Marriage, the pro-gay marriage campaign, reported that they got their $250,000 match donation from New York City's Independent Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

Another high-profile New Yorker, Jonathan Tisch, the chairman of Loews, kicked in $10,000 today.

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