Ron Johnson’s Money Bomb Misfires, Lands With a Dud

Oct 07, 2010

Johnson’s Poor Fund-raising Shows Fading Enthusiasm Among Republicans,
Johnson Will Again Be Forced to Tap Family Fortune to Fund Campaign

MADISON — Republican Senate Candidate Ron Johnson’s all-day fundraising “money bomb” landed with a dud yesterday, performing so poorly that the campaign was forced to quietly yank the automatically updated counter from the campaign’s Web page without comment.

The $68,000 raised in Johnson’s failed money bomb pales in comparison to the last check Johnson wrote himself to fund his campaign. Johnson spent 
$865,000 on himself Sept. 8, according to FEC reports.

This also contrasts with a strong showing from the Feingold campaign, which raised $435,971 from more than 15,000 people in one day after the Republican primary vote.

Johnson of course, has no problem filling his lack of grassroots support with his own checkbook. He has written himself more than $5.2 million in checks to himself, and is benefitting from another $1.7 million in attack ads from outside groups like the U.S. Chamber, which fund-raises from foreign countries.

Johnson told news outlets earlier this year that he was motivated to run after hearing Fox News pundit Dick Morris call for a “rich guy from Wisconsin.”

“I was sitting at home watching Fox News and Dick Morris came on and said ‘Hey, you know, Feingold is vulnerable. You know, if you’re a rich guy from Wisconsin, step up to the plate.’ I kind of looked at (my wife) Jane and said ‘is he, like, talking to me?”
 (WLUK Fox 11 News, 5/17/10]

“Ron Johnson admitted he got into this race because Fox News and Dick Morris wanted a rich guy from Wisconsin to run. Ron Johnson heard the rich guy call from Dick Morris and has been spending millions of his own money ever since,” said Mike Tate, Chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.

Johnson told the media he was willing to spend his entire family fortune on the race. The Washington Post reported:

Johnson can fund himself. Asked how much of his wealth he will spend, if necessary, his answer is as simple as it is swift: “All of it.” [George Will Column), 5/27/10]

Ron Johnson’s self-funding history:

5/1/2010 = $200,000

6/9/2010 = $1,274,184

7/19/2010 = $925,000

8/10/2010 = $500,000

8/19/2010 = $1,500,000

9/8/2010 = $865,000

Total = $5,264,184 (Source: FEC reports)

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