The last campaign finance reports to be filed by Texas state-level candidates before Election Tuesday were due October 26 to the Texas Ethics Commission. With that latest update, all available pre-election campaign finance data for the 2020 election cycle is now included in Transparency USA’s Texas database.
Here are a few highlights from the 2020 totals as we head to the polls:
With $548,232,179.40 in contributions and $535,956,571.18 in expenditures, the pre-election spending in Texas state-level politics has already surpassed both the 2018 and the 2016 election cycle totals.
See the breakdown of how much of that money went to support Democrats, Republicans and other parties on our interactive graph.
The three politicians whose contributions top the candidate list are Governor Greg Abbott ($27,611,087.44), Lt. Governor Dan Patrick ($8,213,186.34), and former State Senator Phillip Huffines ($5,824,122.83). While not unusual, particularly with state-wide office-holders, it’s worth noting that neither Abbott nor Patrick is up for reelection this year. Huffines ran for the Texas Senate in 2018, but lost the Republican primary to State Sen. Angela Paxton. The $5.8 million credit to Huffines account is a result of Huffines forgiving a loan he previously made to his own account.
The complete list of candidates includes transaction records for donations, expenditures, loans, and payees for the 2020 election cycle. Records extend back to 2015 where applicable, and can be sorted by election cycle or as a cumulative total for any Texas state-level candidate.
The donors topping the list are Charles Butt ($10,520,358.73), Karla Jurvetson ($8,488,662.00), and Forward Majority Action ($6,999,022.88). Click on any donor’s profile to view which candidates, political action committees (PACs) and parties they contributed to this cycle. The top three contributors to Texas elections for 2020, two individuals and one federal PAC, have donated a combined total of more than $26 million, primarily to Democratic candidates and causes.
When researching donors in Texas state politics, you can sort according to individual, entity, or federal PAC to get a more specific look at the sources of contributions to Texas candidates and PACs.
The PACs that received the highest contributions this cycle in Texas are ActBlue Texas ($23,022,816.62), Forward Majority ($17,317,019.80), and Texans for Lawsuit Reform ($17,147,143.94).
Overall, donations to PACs are greater than donations directly to candidates, accounting for $321,538,442 of all contributions. You can see the full list of PACs that are active in Texas for detailed information on both donors and payees.
Our 2020 Election Races feature includes every state-level race in Texas, and is a great resource for comparing the money in the races on your ballot. You can easily see the total funding, sources and spending of each candidate who hopes to win your vote. Whatever your selection criteria, analyzing whether a candidate’s finances are aligned with their stated values or intentions can be a helpful tool in finalizing your voting plan.
Thank you, as always, for trusting us to bring you the most accurate campaign finance data in Texas state-level politics. Join us to get the latest numbers and straightforward analysis delivered straight to your inbox after the election. Go vote!