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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


How UA donors contributed to Mark Kelly’s senate campaigns


Incumbent Senator Mark Kelly gives a speech to a crowd of students and supporters about his campaign. (Photo by Lorenia Valdez)

Incumbent Democratic Senator Mark Kelly relied heavily on donations from a number of sources, including donors from the University of Arizona and Arizona State University, to fund his reelection campaign against Republican Blake Masters.

The UA was Kelly’s fourth largest campaign donor, bringing in $101,501 to his political campaigns since his 2020 run for the remaining two years of Senator John McCain’s term, who passed away in 2018. ASU was the fifth largest contributor with $94,369, according to OpenSecrets, the non-partisan, non-profit organization that tracks campaign money and its impact on policies and governing. 

The donations covering 2017-2022, OpenSecrets reported, were not from the institutions themselves, but from donors associated with them. Donors giving $200 or more to a campaign must report their employer, the organization said on its website.

Kelly’s top donor was Democracy Engine, a fundraising platform, which contributed $245,011, followed by the University of California, with $162,838 and Alphabet Inc., a collection of companies that includes Google, contributed $110,153.

In total, OpenSecrets reported Kelly raised almost $80 million and spent almost $74 million for this election cycle.

The data was last updated on Oct. 19, and is based on information released by the U.S. Federal Election Commission. 

More details on Kelly’s campaign donations can be found on the OpenSecrets website

This is the first campaign for Trump-aligned Masters, a venture capitalist who grew up in Tucson and graduated from Stanford University. OpenSecrets reported that Masters’ campaign raised over $12 million primarily from small individual contributions. Campaign spending reached almost $9.5 million, with additional contributions coming from large individual contributions, political action committees and Masters himself, who contributed more than $1 million.

Two days after election day, Kelly led Masters by several points. With over 70% of total votes counted as of Thursday, Nov. 10, Kelly was ahead by around 94,770 votes.

*El Inde Arizona is a news service of the University of Arizona School of Journalism.

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