Georgia Senate: Warnock to report raising $1.5M since joining the race

The Rev. Raphael Warnock will report that he raised roughly $1.5 million over a two-month span since joining the contest for U.S. Senate, setting an early financial marker as he tries to consolidate Democratic support in a volatile free-for-all race.

Warnock, who pastors Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church, ended the first quarter with about $1.2 million in cash on hand. His campaign said the reverend drew contributions from more than 30,000 donors, and that 95% of them were under $100.

The Democrat entered the race against U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler on Jan. 30, and quickly lined up endorsements from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and a host of prominent Georgia figures, including Stacey Abrams and former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young.

The financial reports for federal candidates due this week span a three-month period between Jan. 1 and the end of March, a stretch that coincided with a worsening coronavirus pandemic that drained bank accounts and sapped interest in political contests.

Warnock is one of 20 candidates competing to challenge Loeffler, a financial executive who is scrambling to stem the fallout over recent stock transactions. They will share the same November special election ballot, and a runoff between the two top contenders is necessary if none get a majority of the vote.

U.S. Rep. Doug Collins is Loeffler’s most formidable Republican challenger, while other Democratic contenders include Matt Lieberman, the son of the former vice presidential candidate, and former U.S. Attorney Ed Tarver.