Flickr photos by Max Morse, Phil Konstantin
Meg Whitman has out-raised Jerry Brown four to one in large contributions during the month-plus since the June 8 primary, further adding to her already massive cash advantage heading into election season, state campaign records show.
Not counting the $20 million check she wrote to her campaign two days after the primary – almost as much as Brown had in the bank at the time – Whitman has reported raising just more than $2 million since June 9, compared to about $516,000 for Brown. Late-contribution reporting rules require only donations of at least $5,000 to be disclosed in the weeks since the primary.
Whitman has also narrowed the gap or pulled ahead in several recent polls, which her campaign has hyped as indicators that she is gaining on Brown, who led going into the general election season.
The money disparity has been a popular narrative for Brown, who has portrayed himself as an insurgent underdog, running a low-cost campaign against Whitman's seemingly bottomless bank account. But that narrative has largely assailed Whitman's personal fortune, which continues to constitute the overwhelming bulk of her campaign cash, and not the money she has raised.
Several of Whitman's largest contributions came from business executives in other states. For example, Dow Chemical CEO Andrew Liveris gave Whitman the maximum $25,900, as did Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne. California moguls such as Hilton Hotels chairman Barron Hilton and former Univision CEO Jerry Perenchio chipped in as well.
Brown's biggest donors include George Marcus, chairman of real-estate investment firm Marcus & Millichap and several members of his family. A couple of unions, the California Teamsters and the United Food and Commercial Workers, also gave the max.