CA17: Honda outraises Khanna for the first time

Rep. Mike Honda outraised Democratic challenger Ro Khanna in 2014’s first three months – the first quarter in which he has done so since Khanna entered the race a year ago.

Honda, D-San Jose, raised more than $650,000 from Jan. 1 through March 31, and had more than $1,050,000 cash on hand at the end of that period, his campaign said Wednesday. Khanna’s campaign said it raised more than $460,000 in the same time, and has almost $2 million cash on hand.

Republican candidate Vanila Singh’s campaign consultant, Travis Smith, said her numbers won’t be available for a few days. Republican Joel Vanlandingham has said he doesn’t plan to accept contributions.

Honda’s campaign noted the seven-term congressman received contributions from more than 1,750 individuals, with more than half of the contributions at $100 or less. “I’m humbled by the incredible support from our grassroots supporters nation-wide, which makes this campaign possible, and I anticipate will continue to grow,” Honda said in a news release.

Khanna’s campaign also said a majority of his donors gave less than $100 each, and noted Khanna has refused to take money from any political action committees and is relying on a 150-person volunteer fundraising committee instead of paid finance consultants.

“I knew that taking a bold pledge to refuse special interest donations and only receiving support from individuals wouldn’t be the easiest road, but leading by example is what’s expected of Silicon Valley’s congressman,” Khanna said in a news release. “I’m proud of the grassroots campaign that we’re building and I’m humbled by the enthusiastic response to my positive message of changing business as usual in Washington.”

Khanna outstripped Honda in fundraising in each of the previous quarters in this 2013-14 cycle; at 2013’s end, Khanna had $1.97 million cash on hand while Honda had $622,000 in the bank. If they spend all they’ve raised, the 17th Congressional District race could rank among the nation’s most expensive House contests.

Honda campaign manager Doug Greven said in Wednesday’s release that his team “always said that we would have the resources we need to win in November, and our strong numbers this quarter show that we are on track. We know that Mike will make it past the June 3 primary, and we will continue to marshal our resources for the November general election.”

Khanna campaign manager Leah Cowan said her team is “especially proud to have increased our fundraising from last quarter and to tell the people of the 17th District we have done so without taking a single dollar from PACs or lobbyists.” She challenged Honda to disclose how much money he has taken from such sources.

Neither campaign provided its detailed Federal Election Commission reports, which must be filed by April 15.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • AmusedToDeath14

    I will be curious to see how much special interest money PAC-man Honda raised last quarter. My bet is that it is well over 40% and that he called in every possible favor.

  • Guest

    Mike Honda is the Gucci Gulch candidate, no question, most of his money coming from the Beltway, just like Pete Stark’s campaign two years ago. These DC special interest groups give to any incumbent who is breathing, they – these special interest groups that have completely corrupted modern politics – are mostly interested in blocking reform, of any kind really. In this race they are lining up with Mike Honda, who is a known commodity to them, they know they can rely on Honda to do nothing.
    Insiders in DC know Honda’s thing is travel – he’s hooked on Congressional junkets – he never tires of getting free vacations – paid for by special interest groups or US taxpayers. This – many believe – is why Honda won’t leave the house, despite his lack-luster do-nothing 14 year career. Quitting Congress will end Honda’s free overseas travel, so Honda is desperate to hang on to his seat, many believe. Honda wants to vacation till he drops, pretty obviously. I think Honda deserves pink slip.

  • Glad to see @amusedtodeath14:disqus and fellow Ro Khanna staffer “Guest” are taking pot shots at Congressman Honda — just like their boss, Leah Cowan.

    Leah, perhaps you’re unaware, but Congressman Honda is legally required to disclose the amounts received from PACs and lobbyists, as well as the identities of those organizations and people.

    Instead, someone should challenge Ro Khanna to videotape every conversation he has with a Silicon Valley executive who maxed out to his campaign, and release that publicly.

    What does Ro have to hide?

  • Elwood

    Always good to hear from Ro’s staff!

    And thank YOU, guest!

  • Elwood

    It’s too bad that Ro is running so scared that he has to resort to dirty tricks. (See Josh’s story in today’s CCTimes).

    I would hope that a candidate for Congress would have better ethics, or at least a staff smart enough to cover their tracks.

  • Marga

    That’s actually a dirty trick by the Singh campaign and the pro-Modi camp.

  • Elwood

    Marga you are seriously deluded. Read Josh’s story.

  • Marga

    I did and I commented below it. Read my comment, but also the comment from Singh’s supporters.

  • Stand by – I’ve got a post coming that’ll include a lot of stuff for which I didn’t have room in today’s story.

  • Marga

    I had commented on this, but I can’t see my comment now.

    I think these accusations are very unfair. Honda has not been going around taking vacations. He hasn’t been going to Hawaii or Bali. He went to Korea a bunch of times, and his work on behalf of comfort women is both well known and laudable. He’s gone to Haiti, to Cuba, to Turkey and Israel, to Afghanistan and Cameroon. He’s learned about the problems facing people in the world,he’s represented American interests and he should continue to do so.

    And while foreign travel may sound fun and exotic for those who haven’t engaged in much of it, it gets tiring and boring soon enough when it’s for work. Sure, you get 1/2 a day to tour some place, but then have to spend 12 hours in a plane back. I admire Honda for having the energy to take these trips.

    I do think that Khanna was wrong and continues to be wrong on criticizing Honda for his foreign travel, and I believe that if he’s elected, Khanna should do the same thing. We can’t

  • Marga

    an arms deal, surely.

  • Guest

    Honda is the one hiding, he won’t debate Khanna or the other candidates. Honda also won’t swear off PAC money or lobbyist money – Like many incumbents he is hooked on it, he is creature of DC special interest groups, not a reformer at all. Haven’t heard one reform proposal coming out of Honda campaign, just fluff about what a great job he has done, that’s not so, almost the entire high tech community has lined up with Khanna, they are in open revolt, Honda has done zip for high tech. Honda is lazy, likes to take junkets, that’s well known, and this is coming out now because you have a contested election. Honda can no longer hide his weak record, democracy is back in house elections, no more rubber stamping of do-nothing incumbents, like Pete Stark and Honda. Voters wants results, action on jobs front, income inequality, deficit reduction. Not going to get that with the weak, bumbling Honda, he is part of problem


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