District 14 Republican Runoff candidates

The next batch of campaign finance reports is due Thursday from the two Republican candidates vying to replace Northwest Georgia’s Congressman Tom Graves.

Marjorie Taylor Greene and Dr. John Cowan have each reported taking in over $1 million so far during their bids to win the nomination. The winner of the Aug. 11 runoff will face Democrat Kevin Van Ausdal in November.

Candidates must file a report with the Federal Election Commission 12 days before every election, in addition to regularly scheduled reports. Their latest regular reports, filed July 15, cover the period between May 21 and June 30.

Greene took in $365,834 during that period — including a $200,000 loan from herself — and ended with a cash balance of $254,885.

Cowan loaned his campaign $100,000 at the same time, bumping his contribution total to $312,005 and his ending balance to $255,878 as of June 30.

Neither balance includes their personal loans, which are on the books as debt to be paid back.

Of the $1,534,400 in total donations to Greene’s campaign, $900,000 came from her. Cowan’s reported $1,011,306 in overall donations includes $200,000 of his own money.

An analysis of the filings by the nonpartisan, nonprofit Center for Responsive Politics shows that 39% of Greene’s funding has come from individual donors compared to 71% for Cowan.

Also, Cowan raised 90% of his funding from sources in Georgia, with 26.2% coming from within the 14th Congressional District. Top zip codes for his donors were in Rome, Dalton, Calhoun, Cartersville and Atlanta.

Greene raised 52% of her funding in state, with 6.1% coming from within the district. Top zip codes for her donors were in Alpharetta, Duluth, Rome, Atlanta and Florida.

The 14th District covers the counties of Floyd, Polk, Chattooga, Gordon, Walker, Catoosa, Dade, Whitfield, Haralson, Murray and Paulding, and part of Pickens County.

Greene won all but Floyd County in the nine-person primary, garnering 40.43% of the vote to Cowan’s 21.01%.

Political action committees

The CRP also took a look at the money that came from political action committees in a report by Ian Karbal posted last week on its website OpenSecrets.org.

Karbal wrote that Cowan outraised Greene this quarter, $62,000 to $12,000, in contributions from PACs. His donors include Republican Leadership PACs, “suggesting broader party support, including in Georgia,” Karbal wrote.

Committees associated with eight congressional Republicans — led by House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and including Georgia Reps. Buddy Carter and Austin Scott — all contributed to Cowan’s campaign. Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee and Georgia State House Rep. Bert Reeves also contributed to Cowan.

The CRP report also noted that KochPAC, the political action committee of Koch Industries, requested a refund of the $5,000 it had contributed to Greene’s campaign.

The request came after PAC leaders became aware of photos of her posing with known neo-Nazi leader Chester Doles and members of right-wing militia groups, as well as her vocal support for the QAnon conspiracy theory.

“We do not condone such harmful and divisive rhetoric, and we deeply regret our decision to contribute,” said KochPAC communications director David Dziok in an email to CRP’s Karbal.

However, Karbal also listed several conservative fundraising groups that are maintaining support for Greene:

The House Freedom Caucus’ PAC has directed over $70,000 in earmarked contributions to her and made its own $5,000 contribution.

The National Association for Gun Rights and Gun Owners of America, two lobbying groups that have positioned themselves to the right of the National Rifle Association, also contributed $1,000 and $5,000 respectively.

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