Archive for July, 2012

The Wealthy Finance the Bulk of All Political Campaigns

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

For the wealthy, giving financial support to politicians and their parties is not only a way to influence policy, but also an effort to serve their own self-interests. Whether fighting global warming or tax increases, political donors tend to give higher average donations than donors who give to other non-profits.

Contributions of $200 and more typically account a significant majority of all campaign donations. In fact, in 2010 the average congressional campaign got 84% of its money from donations of $200 or more.

According to the Sunlight Foundation, most political donors are highly ideological, whether liberal or conservative. They show support for multiple campaigns and single-issue groups and they give often. Not surprisingly, most are investors, lawyers and corporate executives.

Politicians and their backers are increasingly relying on donations from such affluent supporters in positions of power. They are also looking outside of their own districts to “Political A.T.M.s” or certain ZIP codes that are home to concentrated communities of high-spending donors. In fact, in recent congressional elections nondistrict residents provided 68% of the typical candidate’s total itemized individual contributions.

Your takeways?

1)    Target the wealthiest 1% for the majority of your political donations

2)    Target the wealthy in high-performing ZIP codes for local campaigns nationwide

3)    Target investors, lawyers, C-level executives and known major gift donors

If you can achieve all three of the above, you’ve reached the political fundraising holy grail.


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