Statewide candidates vie for most signatures, small donors

Gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon and lieutenant governor candidate and New York City Councilman Jumaane Williams hold a rally in Union Square last month.
Gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon and lieutenant governor candidate and New York City Councilman Jumaane Williams hold a rally in Union Square last month.
lev radin/Shutterstock
Gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon and lieutenant governor candidate and New York City Councilman Jumaane Williams hold a rally in Union Square last month.

Statewide candidates vie for most signatures, small donors

Cuomo raised the most, and Teachout has an impressive number of contributors.
July 17, 2018

It’s two months before the primaries, and statewide candidates are proudly trumpeting the numbers of petitions they have handed to the state Board of Elections and their fundraising totals, to show that their campaigns have momentum. One candidate in particular, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, towers over all the others in terms of dollars. But when it comes to popular support, in terms of petition signatures and number of small donors, the race looks more competitive.

Here are the numbers of petitions and fundraising counts for prominent candidates running for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general.

 

Gubernatorial candidates

 

Andrew Cuomo

Petitions: Cuomo was designated by the state Democratic Party and is automatically on the primary ballot.

Fundraising: Cuomo has $31.1 million in his campaign coffers, with $6 million raised in the first six months of 2018, according to The New York Times. The governor is known for raising vast sums through large donations. Cuomo has recently emphasized how much money he has raised through individual donors, which he never has before. One donor, Christopher Kim, gave to Cuomo’s campaign 69 times in the days before the filing deadline, presumably to lower the average of donations. Other small donors included Matthew Wing, Giorgio DeRosa and Maureen DeRosa. Wing is the husband of Cuomo’s top aide Melissa DeRosa, while the other DeRosas are her parents. He has spent around $5 million for his campaign.

Cynthia Nixon

Petitions: Nixon’s campaign reported that it had submitted 65,000 petition signatures to the state Board of Elections, 50,000 more than the required 15,000.

Fundraising: Since she launched her campaign, Nixon has raised $1.6 million, with 97 percent coming from donations of $200 or less. Her campaign reported raising $500,000 in less than a month.

Marc Molinaro

Petitions: Molinaro was designated by the state Republican Party and is automatically on the primary ballot.

Fundraising: Molinaro’s campaign reported raising $1.1 million with $887,000 in cash on hand. President Donald Trump’s younger brother, Robert, donated $25,000 to Molinaro’s campaign.

 

Candidates for lieutenant governor

 

Kathy Hochul

Petitions: Hochul was designated by the state Democratic Party and is automatically on the ballot.

Fundraising: Hochul has raised $1.2 million for her race.

Jumaane Williams

Petitions: Williams submitted 68,000 petition signatures to the state Board of Elections.

Fundraising: Williams’ campaign has not released fundraising numbers at press time.

 

Attorney general candidates

 

Letitia James

Petitions: James was designated by the state Democratic Party and is automatically on the primary ballot.

Fundraising: James has raised $1.1 million in the first two months of her campaign, with 60 percent of donors contributing $200 or less.

Zephyr Teachout

Petitions: Teachout’s campaign reported that it had submitted around 60,000 petitions to the state Board of Elections.

Fundraising: Teachout has raised $550,000, with 97 percent of donors giving less than $200. By contrast, James, the frontrunner in the race and the pick of the Democratic Party, raised only $416,000 from small donors. This could indicate grassroots enthusiasm for Teachout’s campaign.

Sean Patrick Maloney

Petitions: Maloney’s campaign reported filing 39,413 signatures.

Fundraising: Maloney reported raising $1.1 million in the first weeks of his campaign with over $4.1 million in cash on hand. It’s unclear how much of that money was transferred from another account, as he is simultaneously running for Congress. However, Maloney’s campaign reported 1,500 individual donations with 90 percent of them $200 or less.

Leecia Eve

Petitions: Eve’s campaign reported filing 33,000 signatures.

Fundraising: Eve raised nearly $300,000, with around $250,000 in cash on hand, according to her campaign.

Grace Segers
is City & State’s digital reporter. She writes daily content on New York City and New York state politics.
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