Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is relying primarily on small donations from out-of-state donors in his bid for the U.S. Senate, according to the Arizona Republic.
His competitors are raking in four-figure donations, while Arpaio is receiving donations as small as $25 “from California to Washington, D.C.” And he maintains that shows he is popular with everyday Americans, the report stated.
Political experts disagree, saying gathering small donations in such a high-profile race is not a good strategy, according to the report.
Rival U.S. Rep Martha McSally, also a Republican, has raised “millions,” for example. Arpaio, on the other hand, entered the race 3 days before McSally and raised about $500,000 during the first 3 months of 2018.
Campaign finance records obtained by the newspaper indicated that during the last quarter, Arpaio’s donations of $200 or more came from California. Eleven donations totaling about $4,700 came from Sacramento.
Arpaio also received 46 donations from Texas, with most of them coming from Houston.
His campaign is built partly on helping President Donald Trump “drain the Washington, D.C. swamp.” To that end, Arpaio has received 32 contributions totaling nearly $14,000 from D.C.
In Arizona, Arpaio received about a dozen contributions in the last quarter.
Also from the report:
Combined, disclosed Arizona donors gave about $6,000 to Arpaio’s Senate bid, Federal Elections Commission show. Five of the donations came from the Wickenburg retiree, three were from Scottsdale, and others came from Sun Lakes, Mesa, Sun City West, Phoenix, Paradise Valley, Morristown, and Parker.
Larry Sabato, a political scientist who directs the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics, said of Arpaio’s fundraising: “Even incumbents that are heavily favored, they’re not running a front-porch campaign.”
That term refers to “low-key races where the candidates stay close to home, forcing supporters to come to them,” the report stated.
In addition to McSally, Arpaio faces Republican rival Kelli Ward and Kyrsten Sinema, who is considered the leading Democrat rival. They are vying for a seat being vacated by Sen. Jeff Flake, who is retiring.