According to an analysis of contributions made to the McDaniel campaign up to the June 3 primary, the GOP primary challenger raised nearly $120,000 that would have to be earmarked for the general election according to individual and PAC contribution limits. He also loaned his campaign $100,100, which must be paid back or forgiven at some point. As of his final pre-primary FEC report, McDaniel had nearly $238,000 cash on hand. That’s enough to cover the $120,000 excess contributions and the loan.
With the runoff election, it appears the money previously earmarked for the general election can be moved forward to the runoff election. Federal statute says contributions can be used for the next election following the date it is released. After the primary runoff, McDaniel had $5,200 raised toward the general election and the $100,100 loan. He reported $60,000 cash on hand. That leaves a deficit of $34,900 for McDaniel.
Of course, that deficit could be wiped away if McDaniel forgives the loan he made to his campaign. Repeated questions about the loan have gone unanswered by campaign officials. Nevertheless, forgiving the loan would leave McDaniel with just less than $55,000 to put toward the legal challenge. As legal challenges go, that’s not a lot. There’s also the cost of paying staff through all this time. In short, that money is going to be wiped out soon.
So whether he’s trying to repay his loan or fund a legal challenge or both, it’s clear that McDaniel’s campaign is in dire financial straits.