Santa Monica Lookout
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Clinton, Rubio Lead Fundraising in Santa Monica

Santa Monica Real Estate Company, Roque and Mark

Pacific Park, Santa Monica Pier

Harding Larmore Kutcher & Kozal, LLP  law firm
Harding, Larmore
Kutcher & Kozal, LLP

Convention and Visitors Bureau Santa Monica

By Jonathan Friedman
Associate Editor

October 5, 2015 -- Who is the most popular US presidential candidate in Santa Monica? If fundraising is the indicator, then the top competitor by far is former first lady, senator and secretary of state Hillary Clinton.

She raised nearly $282,000 from people with Santa Monica addresses, according to the most recent financial report from the Federal Election Commission (FEC). No other candidate raised a six-figure amount.

The fundraising totals provided by the FEC cover the final days of December 2014 through June 1 of this year. Another financial reporting period ended this week, but the candidates have two weeks to submit their information.

Clinton’s Santa Monica money came from 139 people, a significant portion of the 233 locals who have donated to candidates in the early, but already heated, presidential race. Individuals can't give more than $2,700 to a candidate’s campaign.

Determining precisely how much a candidate has raised from people in this city can be tricky, because some donors could list an office that is outside Santa Monica as their address.

Clinton being the top fundraiser in the liberal Democrat-dominated Santa Monica should come as no surprise to political observers. But some people might think that self-proclaimed socialist Bernie Sanders, who is also running as a Democrat, would be second on the list. This is not the case.

Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio tops all candidates except Clinton with just under $36,000. The money came from 19 people, most of whom donated the maximum amount or close to it. Next on the list is another Republican, Sen. Ted Cruz from Texas, who took in nearly $27,000.

Sanders, who has surprised many observers by being competitive with Clinton in polls and even beating her in some states, has collected a little more than $24,000. As has been the case with his campaign, most of the cash came from people who gave smaller amounts of money. Of the 38 donors, only two gave Sanders the maximum amount.

Jeb Bush, the brother and son of former presidents and a former two-term governor of Florida, received approximately $20,000 from Santa Monica.

Others collecting Santa Monica money included Republicans Lindsey Graham ($6,415), Rand Paul ($2,062) and Ben Carson ($1,000) as well as Democrat Martin O’Malley ($8,600).

Carson, a neurosurgeon who frequently polls second among Republicans, received all his Santa Monica money from one person.

Not on the fundraising list is Republican front-runner Donald Trump. The businessman and former reality TV star has said that he plans to self-fund his campaign, so he has not needed any Santa Monica money.

Republican Carly Fiorina, who unsuccessfully ran in 2010 for a California seat in the US Senate although her current primary residence is in Virginia, has also taken in no money from Santa Monica--at least not through June 1. Fiorina might go above the zero mark in the next report, since she has recently shot up in the polls due to strong debate performances.

Among the list of Santa Monica donors to all the campaigns, none is a member of the City Council.

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