Originally published July 12, 2012, in the Martha’s Vineyard Times.
On Sunday afternoon, Democratic candidate for the Senate from Massachusetts Elizabeth Warren appeared at a fundraiser held in the Old Whaling Church in Edgartown. She discussed her campaign and answered questions from among approximately 500 people, many of them donors who paid the requested $25 (friend), $50 (supporter), $100 (sponsor) or $250 (host).
On June 2, Ms. Warren won the Massachusetts Democratic Party’s nomination to compete for incumbent Republican Senator Scott Brown’s seat in the November election. She won 95.7 percent of the party vote. In 30 years, no Democratic candidate has won by such a large margin.
That support was evident Sunday. Cars parked outside the church displayed bumper stickers endorsing the candidate. Caroline Kennedy of Aquinnah and her son, Jack, attended.
Of her fundraising effort, Ms. Warren said she is trying to catch up to Senator Brown. “On the day I declared I was running for the United States Senate, Scott Brown already had a plan,” she said. “The plan was to collect millions of dollars before the Senate race ever started, from the Tea Party and Wall Street.”
But Ms. Warren has caught up, and then some. The Democrat Senate hopeful has raised $15,842,403, according to data from the Federal Election Commission. Senator Brown has raised $11,977,810.
While Ms. Warren has outraised Mr. Brown since she entered the race in September, the incumbent began the race with $7 million in his campaign treasury. He now has about $4 million more in cash than Ms. Warren does.
The top three donors to Senator Brown are FMR Corporation, $167,975, Goldman Sachs, $73,900, and Liberty Mutual, $73,650.
He has received 83 percent of contributions from individual donors, 13 percent from political action committees, and $777,353 from undisclosed sources.
The three top contributors to Ms. Warren’s campaign are Emily’s List, $306,908, Harvard University, $157,451, and Moveon.org, $47,140.
Ninety-seven percent of contributions to Ms. Warren were from individual donors. Two percent of donations were from political action committees, and one percent, $169,331, was from undisclosed sources.
Ms. Warren criticized Senator Brown, who opposed a bill requiring more detailed campaign finance disclosures, and called for more clarity in political fundraising.
"The first thing is, we can do much better disclosure. We need candidates to tell who is contributing, tell how much is being contributed, and doing it within 24 hours," Ms. Warren said. "We need to have a good, public conversation about campaign financing. "
On Monday morning, Althea Harney, Ms. Warren’s press secretary, declined to answer when asked how much Sunday’s event raised for the Warren campaign. She said the tally would be released to the Federal Election Commission in the campaign’s next quarterly report.