The latest fundraising reports tell us a lot about the candidates and who is funding them. We crunched the numbers from the June 30 disclosures to get some more context on where the mayoral hopefuls are seeking support.
While former Mayor Kasim Reed boasted the largest pool of donations, he didn’t have the highest number of donors, our analysis shows. That accolade goes to Council President Felicia Moore, who entered the race back in January and had the most time to solicit donations. She said 84% of her 1,253 donors listed in her June 30 report live in Atlanta.
Meanwhile, Councilman Andre Dickens had 893 donors as of June 30, about 60% of whom were residents. More than 54% of Reed’s 700-plus donors live in Atlanta. Attorney Sharon Gay had more than 400 donors, and more than 64% of them are residents. Councilman Antonio Brown had 167 contributors and more than 40% of them are residents.
While Reed has said his high fundraising numbers show his message is resonating, Dickens and Moore are hoping to show the power of more small-dollar donations. A Dickens spokeswoman told us: “Our campaign believes that Democracy counts for everyone, not just the rich.”
We spotted some notable donors in the mix, including rapper Clifford Harris, A.K.A. the rapper T.I., who gave $4,300 to Reed, an entertainment lawyer. Record producer Michael Len Williams II, known as Mike Will Made It, donated $2,000 to Reed, whose donor pool included several people in the media and entertainment industry.
Other big-money donors in the race include businesses and executives inside and outside of Atlanta, as well as attorneys and real estate developers, who were especially visible in the reports for Moore and Gay, whose work focuses on land use zoning. Gay boasted the biggest war chest at the end of June, but nearly 65% of that money came from a personal loan she made to her campaign.
The next campaign finance reports are due Sept. 30.
It’s qualifying week: From Tuesday to Friday, anyone hoping to run for mayor or City Council will go down to City Hall and file the official paperwork to get on the ballot. That means this week is the final chance for any last-minute candidates to jump into the contest.
City Hall is still closed to the public, but officials tell us the city will post a running list of the qualified candidates every hour until Friday at 4:30 p.m.; we’ll be keeping track of who jumps in to run throughout the week.
Another reason qualifying is important: Reporters have asked Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms multiple times when she might weigh in on the race for mayor. For months, the answer has been the same: After the Aug. 20 qualifying deadline.
On the topic of fundraising, Kasim Reed recently celebrated on social media that he raised a whopping $460,000 in just a few days thanks to a swanky fundraiser last weekend at the White House — not the actual White House, but the replica built at Tyler Perry Studios for movie and TV shoots.
The former mayor had a busy weekend, with another fundraiser downtown Saturday night. On Sunday, he held a grand opening for his new campaign headquarters off 14th Street in the Home Park neighborhood.
Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@
Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@
What’s coming up:
- The City Council is set to take a closely watched vote Monday on the proposal to build a new training center for police and firefighters on the site of the old Atlanta prison farm in DeKalb County. Despite opposition from environmental and social justice activists, it is expected to have wide support among the Council. As for the mayoral candidates, Moore, Dickens and Gay voiced support for the new facility at a recent forum. Brown and Reed said they like the idea, but not the proposed location.
- Atlanta’s newest and largest park officially opens to the public on Tuesday. Mayor Bottoms and other city leaders will be on hand for the grand opening of Westside Park, which has been in the works for years around the Bellwood Quarry in northwest Atlanta. Check out this preview:
As always, please send any questions, story tips, or suggestions to us at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll be back next week with another edition of The Race for City Hall.