U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy raised as much money during the last quarter as Shreveport Mayor Adrian Perkins, his main Democratic challenger in the Nov. 3 election.
But the figures mean that Cassidy is sitting on a much bigger campaign war chest because he has been collecting contributions over the last six years while Perkins didn’t enter the race until July.
The money advantage helps explain why Cassidy has aired four different TV ads so far while Perkins has broadcast only a single spot that introduces him to voters. It also will give him more money for TV and digital ads in the campaign’s final weeks.
A Republican, Cassidy raised $1.4 million from July 1 through Sept. 30, increasing his total campaign haul to $10.67 million.
Cassidy had $4.57 million on hand as of Sept. 30.
“I am working hard to earn every vote and defend our state’s values in the Senate,” Cassidy said in a statement.
Perkins, who announced his candidacy on July 23, raised $1.33 million during the last quarter.
“Our campaign has generated a great deal of excitement and enthusiasm from Louisianans since day one,” said Perkins for Louisiana Campaign Manager Hilary Barrett, adding that, unlike Cassidy, Perkins' campaign has not raised money for corporate PACs. "Our average contribution is $43 and we have collected nearly 50,000 individual donations, which is more donations than Senator Cassidy has collected since 2015."
Perkins had $680,000 on hand as of Sept. 30.
Cassidy is seeking his second term in the Senate while Perkins wants to go to Washington after two years on the job as Shreveport’s mayor.
Over the past four years, Cassidy has been a strong supporter for President Donald Trump. He voted for the president's 2017 tax cut and for his two nominees to the Supreme Court. He is backing the current nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to replace Justice Antonin Scalia.
Perkins favors raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour, wants to roll back the Trump tax cut, supports a massive investment to upgrade the country's roads and bridges and wants the Senate to wait until next year to handle Barrett's nomination.
National handicappers rate the race as a safe Republican seat. The huge amount of money that Democratic donors have given to candidates challenging vulnerable Republican incumbents in other states has yet to materialize for Perkins.
Two other little-known Democrats also are challenging Cassidy in the open primary. They are Peter Wenstrup, a math teacher at Livingston Collegiate Academy in New Orleans, and Antoine Pierce, a part-time actor who owned a coffee shop in Baton Rouge until the coronavirus shut down the economy.