At-Large Money Watch

Yes, it's that time again -- the July second-half numbers are in, and I must overanalyze them because that's just how I am. And aren't you grateful for that!

I'll make some comments below, but first here's the data as I put it together, with apologies for any errors on my part. I'm listing them in order of total fundraising for the two-year cycle (which for most of them dates back only a few months, to when they launched their campaigns). The first number is their total reported July contributions; the second is their total raised for the cycle; the third is the cash on hand as of July 31. Self-funding is included.

John Connolly July: $22,600  Total: $292,603  Cash: ~$85,000

Stephen Murphy  July: $4450  Total: $123,545  Cash: $69,724

Felix Arroyo  July: $13,666  Total: $69,962  Cash: $44,069

Ayanna Pressley  July: $24,793  Total: $69,520  Cash: $31,770

Andrew Kenneally  July: $7034  Total: $56,217  Cash: $38,722

Tomas Gonzalez  July: $8300  Total: $30,278  Cash: $9489

Tito Jackson  July: $18,444  Total: $29,232  Cash: $19,745

Ego Ezedi  July: $12,930  Total: $26,458  Cash: $6204

Jean-Claude Sanon  July: $4310  Total: $15,884  Cash: $5057

Doug Bennett  July: $1834  Total: $15,820  Cash: $8236

Robert Fortes  July: $6238  Total: $12,113  Cash: $6984

Hiep Nguyen  July: $6969  Total: $10,169  Cash: $4114

Scotland Willis  July: $0  Total: $3900  Cash: $2375

Sean Ryan  July: $978  Total: $1478  Cash: $1065

Bill Trabucco  July $120  Total: $345  Cash: $94

You can see that several distinct tiers have developed: the two incumbents, who have each raised six figures; a 'big 3' of Arroyo, Pressley, and Kenneally, who have raised over $50k but are not close to $100k; another group of three who have each raised roughly 25k-30k; a lower pack roughly between $10k and $15k; and the bottom three, each under $5k.

But you can also see the potential for some shifting, even in the month left before Labor Day -- after which it's a two-week sprint to the prelim on 9/22. Pressley's boffo July, after a $20k June, suggests that she may quickly separate herself from the other challengers. Jackson's big July is a little misleading, because he's the only one whose first big fundraiser was that late; nevertheless, it suggests upward potential. So does Ezedi's July take. Meanwhile, Nguyen and Fortes have finally started pulling in some money, so perhaps that will lead to even bigger things in the coming weeks.

And the bottom line clearly is that none of the challengers will have enough money to buy themselves city-wide name recognition by the prelim -- they're going to have to get it by hustling, organizing, and maybe a little creative thinking. The ones with a little more have the luxury of office space, nicer-looking literature,  more signs and bumper stickers, a little remuneration for a couple of staff, and the occasional donuts or pizza for the volunteers.

But I would suggest that in a city-wide race among essentially unknown candidates, the difference between what $60,000 can buy you and what $20,000 can buy you means less than the difference between 60 hard-core volunteers and 20, or between 60 hours of hand-shaking and 20. What do you think?

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