State Republican and Democratic campaign committees are receiving scores of cash in advance of the fall Kentucky House elections.
According to the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance, the Democratic House Campaign Caucus Committee has the most cash on-hand, at about $286,000. The GOP House Caucus, meanwhile, has just under $86,000.
The money will be crucial to both parties: for Democrats, to maintain a narrow eight-seat majority in the legislature’s lower chamber; for Republicans, to target vulnerable districts in an attempt to end nearly a century of Democratic House control.
But the money raised and spent by those committees on this fall’s House races is not the end-all, be-all in fundraising. Thanks to recent Supreme Court rulings, several outside groups are targeting the Kentucky House, many of them aligned with Republican interests.
The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission reports that several political action committees across the state have large cash balances as well, and have donated to the House and Senate committees in both chambers. Some of the biggest donors so far have been AT&T, General Electric and Pfizer.
Due to campaign finance laws, they’ll be able to spend unlimited amounts of money to oppose candidates or promote issues in certain races.
Currently, two gubernatorial candidates -- Democrat Jack Conway and Republican Hal Heiner -- have formed their own PACs to help state House candidates in their respective parties.