Records Don’t Count: Jaime Harrison Needs To Raise $10 Million in 12 Days to Beat Lindsey Graham.

To: Supporters of Jaime Harrison

From: Zack Carroll, Campaign Manager, Harrison for Senate

Date: October 22, 2020

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Jaime Harrison is poised to make history in South Carolina and beat Lindsey Graham. The latest Morning Consult poll shows Jaime is up two points. This race could not be tighter.

But our campaign woke up the Republican giant. Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham combined have spent $43 million in South Carolina in the last 8 weeks.

McConnell’s super PAC has raised $92 million, and now he and Graham are already spending an enormous chunk of that to try to stop Jaime’s momentum.

Too many pundits don’t understand what we are up against and have said that Senate campaigns like ours don’t need to keep fundraising. But the fact is that unless our fundraising surges in the final 12 days, we will not be able to match Mitch McConnell, jeopardizing our path to victory.

Look — fundraising records don’t matter. Winning matters.

Democrats have stepped up before to help Jaime, and we need you now more than ever. Running against a 25-year incumbent like Sen. Lindsey Graham is tough, and now he’s got casino magnate Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson’s millions helping him. But this race is tied — only because so many of you believed. We knew since day one that this race would be a pure tossup.

But we’re going to give you an unprecedented look under the hood for our campaign budget — to match Republican spending in this race, we need to raise $10 million to send Lindsey home.

The Road to Victory

  • We started our radio, digital, and television advertising campaign in March, months before Lindsey Graham.
  • We invested early this spring in grassroots organizing to communities of color, earlier than any South Carolina campaign in history.

These were real financial risks. This spring, our campaign warchest was smaller than Lindsey Graham’s. Graham was ten points ahead of us in the polls, but we believed that if we invested early, the Democratic grassroots would be there for us when we needed you.

About Our Third Quarter Fundraising

A lot of pundits have opined about this, so let me be as clear as I know how: yes, we raised a lot of money in the third quarter. And Jaime isn’t your traditional candidate — he’s had jobs since he was 15 years old to make ends meet, and he’s always known how important it is to spend every penny wisely. He and I take our responsibility to invest wisely incredibly seriously. We have spent every single dollar we raised in the third quarter to tie up this race.

This was always our strategic plan. Our historic fundraising did not catch us by surprise. Catching a surge of grassroots energy in our fundraising was the exact scenario we’ve been planning for since Jaime announced, because we knew his historic candidacy and inspirational message would resonate.

We invested those dollars wisely:

  • We spent $4.3 million on grassroots mobilization, primarily investing in communities of color. For the first time in modern history, we have a grassroots presence in every single one of South Carolina’s 46 counties.
  • We spent $2.2 million on African American radio and $8 million on digital ads.
  • We spent $34 million on television advertising to educate voters about Jaime and push back on the lies from Lindsey Graham.

Through these efforts — unprecedented investment in African-American communities, historic grassroots organizing, and months of educating voters about Jaime — the race is now virtually tied.

What’s Next

In the final week of the campaign we will be drastically outspent by $10 million unless our pace of fundraising increases. That’s why we need to raise $10 million to put us over the top.

Here is our current budget reality:

Right now, we are being outspent. The combined Republican forces — Mitch McConnell’s super PAC, Lindsey Graham’s campaign, and Lindsey’s personal super PAC — are spending over $21 million right now to defend this seat. Their deep-pocketed donors know they have to defend Graham, because he’s essential to their out-of-touch, extreme agenda in Washington.

Also, remember that South Carolina isn’t a cheap state to campaign in:

  • South Carolina has more than 3 million registered voters and seven media markets, including multiple markets that overlap with expensive swing states like North Carolina and Georgia.
  • Jaime is building a campaign infrastructure here for the first time in a generation. Many counties and communities, especially communities of color, require extra investment after decades of neglect by political campaigns of both parties.

Our Path to Victory

Our path to victory is simple: we have to turn out every single voter in South Carolina who wants change. But that takes resources and we cannot let our momentum slack for a single second.

This is our fight as much as it is Jaime’s.

If you care about bringing hope and decency back to our politics — this is your fight.

If you care about flipping the Senate — this is your fight.

If you care about ending Lindsey Graham’s hypocrisy and double-dealing — this is your fight.

(If you have any doubt about what’s at stake, take 3 minutes and watch this video of Jaime’s speech at a drive-in rally this weekend — it’ll give you chills.)

To make history on Election Day and defeat Lindsey Graham, our fundraising has to pick up so we can match Mitch McConnell. Here’s what you can do right now:

Written by

Former South Carolina US Senate candidate. Still fighting for working people.

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