The eight day finance reports started getting posted on the city’s campaign finance page yesterday. I’m still working through putting them on my 2011 Election page, but here are a few highlights so far:
– Next to Mayor Parker, the big spender in October was CM Stephen Costello, who made full use of his deep campaign coffers by spending $127K for the period. Nearly all of that was on media – he reported two separate expenditures to Rindy Miller, one for $20K and one for $100K. I don’t know if one is for radio and the other for TV or if there’s some combination of each in each, but I do know that he has both TV and radio ads running. Clearly, he’s not taking any chances. He also raised $48K for the month, but has only $14K remaining after the big buy.
– Ellen Cohen was another big spender, dropping $91K for October. Her big ticket items were direct mail (one expenditure for $29K and two others for $8175 each) and robocalls ($5450). She also raised another $53K and has $60K still on hand, which will come in mighty handy if she winds up in a runoff.
– Another big raiser was CM Al Hoang, who reported a $53K haul after taking in less than 11K in the previous cycle. Of that $53K, $25K was in kind, with the vast majority of those donations being reported as advertising of some kind – TV, radio, magazine, and newspaper. He’s got his game face on, too.
– Mike Sullivan has no opponent and thus no need to spend money now, but as he has his eye on 2012, he has spent a few bucks to get a head start. He bought a $4K ad at the Texas Conservative Review, and dropped another $10K on something called the What’s Up Program, which my mind keeps wanting to call the What’s Happening!! Program. I figure that buys him a sponsorship mention of some kind, much like what happens incessantly during KILT’s broadcasts of Texans games – “Our commercial outros are brought to you by the Mike Sullivan campaign, because it’s time for a different cranky old white guy to be our Tax Assessor”. Anyway, he’s spending for next year, and he has $55K on hand for it.
– Wanda Adams does have an opponent and has not made any public comments about what if any office she may have an eye on next, but if there is one in her mind she has $77K on hand for it after raising $23K and spending $27K. She spent a few grand on radio ads, and $8500 on a mail piece.
– Finally, the Houston Politics blog reports that Mayoral candidate Jack O’Connor spent $2500 to hire a plane to fly around with a “Jack O’Connor for Mayor” banner behind it. One wonders what the eyeball rate might be for something like that compared to, say, a Facebook ad. I suspect the literature is a bit lacking on that.