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Overall Competition in State House, Senate Races Remain Low While a Few Highly Competitive Races Drive Major Fundraising Increases in the House

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Publication Date: October 2006

Publisher(s): Democracy Reform Oregon

Author(s): Sarah Wetherson

Topic: Politics (Campaigns, lobbying, and pressure groups)

Type: News release

Coverage: Oregon


While two-thirds of fundraising frontrunners for the House and Senate are unopposed or face nominal competition, overall fundraising for House seats has increased by 36 percent in real dollars since 2002. This 2006 increase in fundraising accompanies a 2 point decrease in the percentage of races in the House that were unopposed or drowned out in 2002. And 2006, as compared to 2002, has an 8-point increase in the percentage of races where the runner-up fundraising candidate has raised at least 75 percent of the lead fundraising candidate's total. Compared to 2002, fundraising for the Senate has decreased in terms of real dollars by about 20 percent, while the percentage of races where a candidate faces no or only nominal opposition has increased by 33 points.

Elections in 2002 and 2006 share important characteristics. They are both mid-term, non-presidential elections featuring hotly contested gubernatorial races in Oregon.