Obama top recipient of Texas presidential campaign contributions so far

Posted Sunday, Jul. 24, 2011  comments  Print Reprints
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2012 presidential campaign finance

Campaign donations reported by declared 2012 presidential candidates through June 30, according to the Federal Election Commission.

Candidate

Nationwide

Texas

Barack Obama

$45.4 million

$1.4 million

Mitt Romney

$18.3 million

$1.38 million

Tim Pawlenty

$4.5 million

$422,625

Ron Paul

$4.5 million

$286,968

Michele Bachmann

$4.3 million

$70,775

Herman Cain

$2.6 million

$139,748

Newt Gingrich

$2.1 million

$96,900

Rick Santorum

$582,098

$40,925

Gary Johnson

$180,237

$15,250

Sources: Federal Election Commission, OpenSecrets.org

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Gov. Rick Perry has not jumped into the race for the White House, but Texans have started weighing in with their pocketbooks.

Texas political donors have already sent nearly $4 million to presidential candidates, including Democratic President Barack Obama and more than a half-dozen Republican challengers ranging from Mitt Romney to Ron Paul.

Obama has gotten the most so far, slightly more than $1.4 million.

Those donations in no way mean that Texans, even those who have donated to declared presidential candidates, won't line up behind Perry if he decides to run, political analysts say.

"Some will double up, no doubt," said Larry Sabato, a political analyst and director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia. "Few big givers will want to get crosswise with their governor. It's never too late for the governor of Texas to get a truckload of money out of his rich state."

Obama has raked in the most money from Texans, and of that $1.4 million-plus, more than $70,000 came from Tarrant County-area donors, according to the Federal Election Commission.

Republican front-runner Mitt Romney came in a close second, pulling in $1.38 million from Texans, including more than $100,000 locally, FEC records show.

The one Texan already in the GOP presidential race, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Lake Jackson, has received the third-largest amount of Republican Texas donations, after Romney and former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

After that, Herman Cain, former CEO of Godfather's Pizza, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich raised the next-highest amounts in Texas. And Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania and former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson raised the least in Texas, according to federal records.

Despite the money that Texans have poured into various presidential campaigns, observers say plenty of donations will make their way to Perry, if he runs.

"Gov. Perry likely has loyal donors who have given to his past campaigns and done well," said Allan Saxe, an associate professor of government at the University of Texas at Arlington. "Once he announces, I believe the money from many donors large and small from Texas will come forward."

Here's a look at some donations to presidential candidates, according to federal records:

Obama: He drew local donations including $5,000 from former Tarrant County Democratic Chairman Art Brender, $1,000 from former Fort Worth Councilman Jeff Davis, $5,000 from Dallas lawyer Russell Budd and $1,000 from Tarrant County Democratic Chairman Steve Maxwell.

Romney: Local donations include more than $10,000 from Fort Worth Moncrief family members, $2,500 from Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones of Dallas, $2,500 from Fort Worth philanthropist Anne Marion and $250 from former Mayor Bob Bolen.

Paul : He received support especially from the Austin area, which sent him $45,169 in donations. He received $12,599 from a Fort Worth ZIP code. His donations include $5 from Brandon Eby, an aeronautical engineer from Willow Park, and $201 from Martha Blakestad of Lufkin, who listed her employer as Our Lord in Heaven and her occupation as a housewife.

He received several $2,500 donations, including those from Fort Worth investment analyst Joshua Ayers and Fort Worth engineer Bruce Ferguson.

Pawlenty: His biggest Texas donations came from the Dallas area. But he has drawn money statewide, including $5,000 from Tom Hicks, former owner of the Texas Rangers baseball team, and $5,000 each from Houston home builder Bob Perry -- who helped fund the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth opposition to 2004 Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry -- and his wife, Doylene.

Bachmann : She has received more than a dozen local donations, including $1,000 from Fort Worth oil and gas producer Charles Moncrief. She drew the most financial support in Texas from Houston, with more than $10,000.

Cain: He received three donations from the Fort Worth area -- for $150, $250 and $500 -- but found the most, $48,303, from Houston.

Gingrich : He has received more than a dozen local donations, including $2,500 from Dallas billionaire Harold Simmons, whose family owns a majority stake in Waste Control Specialists, and $1,250 from retired CPA George Shelton in Arlington. He drew the most, $14,525, from the San Antonio area.

Santorum: He has received a few local donations, including more than $10,000 from a handful of residents in Colleyville and Southlake. His biggest regional support came from Houston, which added $8,475 to his campaign coffers.

Johnson : He has received the least from Texas, with one donation locally, $250 from Daniel A. Askins in Granbury. He found his biggest Texas donations, $8,250, from the Plano area.

Online: tinyurl.com/432hnpf

Anna M. Tinsley, 817-390-7610

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