Hillary Clinton visits the Union of Carpenters and Millwrights Training Center in Louisville ahead of Tuesday’s presidential primary. Sam Upshaw Jr./The CJ
FRANKFORT, Ky. – A Hillary Clinton political committee transferred $793,000 to the Kentucky Democratic Party in July – a huge and apparently sorely needed infusion of cash for Kentucky Democrats, who so far this year have struggled to compete with the Republican Party of Kentucky in the fundraising battle leading up to the November elections.
The $793,000 transfer from the Hillary Victory Fund amounted to 87 percent of the party’s total receipts for July, according to the party’s report filed with the Federal Election Commission over the weekend. And it amounts to more than half of the total receipts the Kentucky Democratic Party has reported since Jan. 1.
Hillary Victory Fund is a joint fundraising committee of the campaign of Democrat Hillary Clinton for president, the national Democratic Party and many Democratic state party organizations.
It is common for major national campaign committees – in this case, Clinton’s committee – to form joint fundraising committees as a way of raising money from their national network of donors for not just their own campaigns but also for affiliated political committees – in this case, the Democratic Party of Kentucky.
The Kentucky Democratic Party has struggled to raise funds since last November’s election of Republican Matt Bevin as governor. Many large donors – some state contractors, gubernatorial appointees, business executives closely regulated by the state, lobbyists – who gave mostly to the Democratic Party under Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear have shifted to mostly supporting the Republican Party since the GOP gained control of the governor’s mansion.
The Kentucky Democratic Party’s report for July, however, reflected a dramatic upswing: $913,392 in total receipts for the month for the party that had been getting on average about $100,000 a month. Receipts included the $793,000 of that from Hillary Victory Fund, or “HVF” as it is identified in the party’s report filed with the FEC; about $22,000 in transfers from the Democratic National Committee; and about $25,129 in traditional contributions from people and political action committees. The largest contribution during the month came from lobbyist Andrew “Skipper” Martin, of Louisville, who gave $5,000.
The Kentucky Democratic Party’s report shows that the $793,000 it got from the Hillary Victory Fund in July was transferred to an affiliated party account called “Kentucky Democratic Party – Federal.”
After that transfer is subtracted, the party reported having $120,070 on hand as of July 31.
The Republican Party of Kentucky last week reported $204,000 in total receipts in July with $151,000 of that in contributions from people and political action committees. Among the contributions was $10,000 each from Papa John’s founder John Schnatter and his wife, Annette. John Schantter was appointed by Bevin to the University of Louisville Board of Trustees in June.
The Republican Party of Kentucky reported having more than $1.6 million on hand as of July 31.