Virginia congresswomen each have $1 million available
The three Democratic congresswomen who unseated Republicans in Virginia last year each have more than $1 million in their campaign accounts as they try to win reelection in battleground districts in 2020.
Reps. Elaine Luria, Abigail Spanberger and Jennifer Wexton each raised more than $500,000 in the three-month period from July to the end of September, according to finance reports filed by Tuesday's deadline.
The women were part of a blue wave that helped deliver Democrats control of the House and gave their party a majority in the Virginia congressional delegation for the first time.
The campaign finance report is the first since the Virginia congresswomen teamed up with five other Democrats with national security backgrounds last month to announce their support for an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.
Republicans are already lining up to compete for the nomination to challenge Spanberger in a red district in central Virginia as well as Wexton in northern Virginia. Luria has at least one challenger in her swing district of Hampton Roads, although that number may increase after next month's state legislative election, when every seat in the Virginia General Assembly is on the ballot.
Four Republicans intend to compete for the nomination to challenge Spanberger, who unseated Republican Dave Brat in 2018 by fewer than 7,000 votes out of about 350,000 cast, in a district that voted for President Donald Trump by seven points.
Spanberger raised $573,000 for the quarter and has about $1.4 million cash on hand.
Tina Ramirez, who leads a nonprofit organization focused on religious rights, raised about $73,000 and has about $49,000 cash on hand. Andrew Knaggs, a former defense official in the Trump administration; Jason Roberge, a lawyer and Coast Guard veteran from Spotsylvania; and Peter Greenwald, a retired Navy commander from Chesterfield; have filed the documents to run, but they have yet to begin fundraising in earnest. They don't have to publicly disclose their fundraising until next year.
After the General Assembly races, party observers say, Del. Nicholas Freitas, Del. John McGuire and Sen. Bryce Reeves may also seek the nomination, which will be decided by a party-run convention instead of a state-run primary.
In Virginia Beach, Luria unseated Republican Scott Taylor in a district that has been represented by Republicans and Democrats in recent years but voted for Trump by about four points.
Luria raised $558,000 for the quarter and has about $1.1 million cash on hand; she also created a separate PAC with a goal of raising $228,000 for legislative races.
Andy Baan, a cybersecurity expert from Virginia Beach, filed to challenge her but has not submitted a finance report.
Luria, a former naval commander, and Spanberger, a former CIA officer, pledged during their first campaigns to refuse donations from corporate political action committees.
Spanberger and Luria formed a joint fundraising committee with other first-term Democrats who share a national security background: Chrissy Houlahan of Pennsylvania, Mikie Sherrill of New Jersey and Elissa Slotkin of Michigan. They call their effort the Service First Women's Victory Fund. They each netted about $88,000 this year, about half that in the past three months, from the fund.
Emily's List, which supports female candidates in favor of abortion rights, has given about $11,000 each to Luria and Spanberger since January.
They both count committees affiliated with Sen. Mark R. Warne, D-Va., Forward Together, and Rep. Don Beyer, D-Va., BackPAC, among their donors, as well as the New Democrat Action Fund.
Spanberger, who chairs a House agriculture subcommittee, received money from groups that represent the sugar beet, turkey, pork and peanut butter industries. An outspoken advocate for gun control, she also received money from Brady PAC.
In northern Virginia, Wexton, who unseated Republican Barbara Comstock by 12 points last year, raised about $540,000 for the quarter and has about $1.2 million cash on hand.
Rob Jones, a Marine veteran, raised about $105,000 for the quarter and has about $81,000 cash.
Jeff Dove, an Army veteran who lost last year to Democratic Rep. Gerald Connolly in a neighboring district, raised about $52,000 for the quarter and has a little more than that in cash on hand.
Three other Republicans filed to run but have not yet filed campaign finance reports. The nomination will be decided at a convention next spring or summer.