Jay Inslee has done a lot of desperate campaigning over the last few months, from attacking Republicans to flooding his own supporters’ email in-boxes. In just one week prior to the beginning of the pre-legislative session fundraising freeze, Inslee sent out 15 emails begging for money.
Perhaps Inslee’s most embarrassing fundraising stunt came earlier in the year, when he attempted to peddle his personal doodles – think paint-by-numbers, only less compelling drawings – in a bizarre fundraising ploy.
A key sign that Inslee’s re-election fundraising efforts haven’t been going too well, thus requiring his rather pathetic online begging, is apparent if you review his Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) filings. Inslee’s fundraising reports show that he is heavily dependent on a few major sources of money to keep him away from the kind of deficit spending so popular with liberals when they are using public tax dollars.
Inslee’s PDC records show that he ignored the legislative-session fundraising ban for elected officials by tapping the Washington State Democrat Party for money the day before he took office in 2013, starting with $28,000 on Jan. 15. He hit the party piggy-bank again in December 2014, for another $30,000. His demands for party payola grew this year, with four separate transfers from the State Democrats, to the tune of $420,000.
In addition to that $478,000 in money from big donors (think labor unions, trial lawyers and environmentalists like Tom Steyer) washed through the party, Inslee launched his re-election effort by transfering $190,057 from his 2012 campaign account.
That means that $668,057 of Inslee’s campaign cash – 20% of the $3,480,260 money Inslee reported “raising” his last financial report – didn’t actually come from donors giving to his re-election campaign.
Even worse for a candidate seemingly struggling to excite individual (and even special interest) donors, that November 30 PDC report shows Inslee has already spent nearly half the money his campaign has taken in over the last three years. Between payments already made, and his current campaign debt, Inslee has wasted $1,668,704 on his re-election effort so far.
The way (and reason) Inslee is burning through so much money on his campaign efforts is our 3rd most underreported story of the year.
The figures, so far ignored by the mainstream media, are truly stunning. In August, we reported that Inslee had already spent almost $1.1 million of the $1.9 million in campaign “receipts” since he launched his re-election effort with that transfer of $190k left over from his 2012 account.
To keep his campaign from appearing in as much disarray as his administration of our state, the Democrat Party was kind enough to send Inslee $200,000 on the last day of July, 2015. The party appears to have been able to launder that big chunk of change into his account thanks to an infusion of cash from some of the few groups impressed by Inslee’s performance so far – $100,000 from the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) and $85,000 from the Democrat Governor’s Association (DGA).
The way Inslee is churning through campaign cash cannot be hidden—it’s a matter of public record. The reason is unclear—though Inslee’s poor approval ratings may be an indication.
A poll disclosed in July revealed that our green governor’s favorability numbers are sinking. Just 30% of Washington State voters said they were inclined to re-elect Inslee. In 2014, 43% said Inslee was doing a “good” or “excellent” job, and 50% said he was doing an “only fair” job.
Of course, the results should have come as no surprise considering Inslee’s poor leadership performance.
And if the media actually starts pointing out what Inslee is spending his campaign cash on (think consultants and fundraisers), it might end up making him even more dependent on party money to keep his campaign afloat.