Gubernatorial candidates scramble for money

Most are targeting Mass., but some focus out of state

Very real differences are emerging between the candidates for governor in terms of their ability to raise money from voters in Massachusetts who could actually vote for them in November.

Looking at the fundraising totals from 2013 for the gubernatorial candidates, six of the candidates are drawing more of their total amount from within the Commonwealth than without (Figure 1). That group includes Republican Charlie Baker, the two more established Democratic candidates Martha Coakley and Steve Grossman, Democrat Joseph Avellone, and independent candidates Evan Falchuk and Jeffrey McCormick.

Meet the Author

Steve Koczela

President, MassINC Polling Group

About Steve Koczela

Steve Koczela is the President of The MassINC Polling Group, where he has grown the organization from its infancy to a nationally known and respected polling provider. During the 2014 election cycle, MPG conducted election polling for WBUR, the continuation of a three-year partnership. Koczela again led the endeavor, producing polls which came within one point of the margin in both the Massachusetts gubernatorial and U.S. Senate Elections. He was also lead writer for Poll Vault, WBUR’s political reporting section during the 2014 Election Cycle.

He has led survey research programs for the U.S. Department of State in Iraq, in key states for President Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign, and has conducted surveys and polls on behalf of many private corporations. Koczela brings a deep understanding of the foundations of public opinion and a wide ranging methodological expertise. He earned U.S. Department of State recognition for his leading edge work on sample evaluation in post conflict areas using geospatial systems.

Koczela is frequent guest on WBUR as well as many other news and talk programs in Massachusetts and elsewhere. His polling analysis is often cited in local, state, and national media outlets. He currently serves as President of the New England Chapter of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (NEAAPOR). Koczela holds a Master’s degree in Marketing Research from the University of Wisconsin and is a veteran of the war in Iraq.

About Steve Koczela

Steve Koczela is the President of The MassINC Polling Group, where he has grown the organization from its infancy to a nationally known and respected polling provider. During the 2014 election cycle, MPG conducted election polling for WBUR, the continuation of a three-year partnership. Koczela again led the endeavor, producing polls which came within one point of the margin in both the Massachusetts gubernatorial and U.S. Senate Elections. He was also lead writer for Poll Vault, WBUR’s political reporting section during the 2014 Election Cycle.

He has led survey research programs for the U.S. Department of State in Iraq, in key states for President Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign, and has conducted surveys and polls on behalf of many private corporations. Koczela brings a deep understanding of the foundations of public opinion and a wide ranging methodological expertise. He earned U.S. Department of State recognition for his leading edge work on sample evaluation in post conflict areas using geospatial systems.

Koczela is frequent guest on WBUR as well as many other news and talk programs in Massachusetts and elsewhere. His polling analysis is often cited in local, state, and national media outlets. He currently serves as President of the New England Chapter of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (NEAAPOR). Koczela holds a Master’s degree in Marketing Research from the University of Wisconsin and is a veteran of the war in Iraq.

Two candidates, Don Berwick and Juliette Kayyem, are drawing more donations from out-of-state than from Massachusetts. The bulk of Kayyem’s out-of-state support is coming from New York, California, and the beltway (Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia), while Berwick’s support is spread more evenly across a number of states. In this respect, the fundraising mirrors the story of the race so far: Grossman and Coakley are vying for the hearts and minds of core Democratic activists in Massachusetts, while Berwick and Kayyem hope to convert their national reputations on health care policy and national security, respectively, into followings in the Commonwealth.

Charlie Baker, in the meantime, benefits from being the leading Republican in the race, and is raking in large sums from Massachusetts voters. Given that he only entered the race and started collecting donations in September, his annual total is particularly noteworthy. The Democratic convention in June will narrow the field, but for the next several months Democratic donors will have more choices of where to send their money, potentially allowing Baker to build a lead in total fundraising. Tea Party member Mark Fisher jumped into the Republican race in December, so his fundraising, 96 percent of which has come out of his own pocket, is hard to analyze at this point.

Self-funding plays a significant role in the campaigns of several of the candidates, and we are treating that as a separate category in these calculations. Several candidates, particularly the two independent candidates, are more or less relying so far on self-funding to get their campaigns off the ground. Whether they will be able to build a donor base without the party infrastructure available to their competitors remains to be seen.