Israel has raised $10.4 million so far for his committee for the midterm elections, topping the previous fundraising record for his post at this point in the cycle.
“There are just members of the caucus who don’t give dues, and that’s just the way it is,” said a former House Democratic campaign aide who requested anonymity to speak candidly. “It’s just not the way they interact with the caucus.”
Several House Democrats have not transferred any money for DCCC dues this cycle yet, according to the sheet’s tally, including House Administration Committee ranking member Robert A. Brady of Pennsylvania and House Agriculture ranking member Collin C. Peterson of Minnesota. Both Democrats have raised zero or relatively small sums for the committee as well.
Peterson faces a tough race in 2014, and some Democrats privately speculate he could announce his retirement after the farm bill passes. Still, top House Democratic leaders hosted a massive fundraiser for his re-election campaign in November.
There’s been significant tension in previous cycles between the DCCC and the CBC, which includes many members who represent districts with below-average incomes. Last cycle, Israel pledged to revise the points system used to evaluate member giving to better reflect the CBC’s efforts.
A few members in tough races — Reps. John Barrow of Georgia, Timothy H. Bishop of New York, Michael M. Honda of California and John F. Tierney of Massachusetts — transferred zero funds to the DCCC, according to the dues sheet. But members of the committee’s Frontline program for endangered incumbents, such as Barrow and Bishop, rarely catch flak for skipping out on dues.
Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., takes a selfie with his cut-out head during the Hoops for Youth 16th annual charity basketball game held at George Washington University's Smith Center, September 8, 2014. The members of Congress team beat the lobbyist team 46-40. Buy photo here.