Mayoral race candidates hit early historic fundraising amounts

The race for the next mayor of San Jose is shaping up to be the most expensive political contest in the city’s history.

San Jose Rookie Council member Matt Mahan, a former tech entrepreneur, announced Tuesday that he made a personal contribution of a staggering $10,000 of $504,000 from nearly 1,000 donors during the first 23 days of the city’s fundraising period. Thereby, making them early fundraising pioneers.

Meanwhile, according to Chavez’s campaign, Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez, a tenured South Bay politician and longtime Labor leader, has brought in $474,000 from nearly 1,000 donors, including a $10,000 personal contribution. Council member Raul Perlez, who is battling Chavez for support and funding from labor organizations in the area, said Tuesday that he had raised about $264,000 from about 500 donors.

Council member Dev Davies, who must stop Mahan for support from the city’s business factions, declined to disclose his initial fundraising total through his campaign advisor on Tuesday, saying that his team is yet to open its doors. was also finalizing this figure.

“These are surprising numbers for such a short period of time, especially for greats who are relatively new to the political scene,” said Terry Christensen, emeritus professor of political science at San Jose State University. “This dollar amount certainly solidifies his credibility as a candidate.”

The only other San Jose mayoral candidate in recent years who raised as much money in the race so early as the great was Mayor Sam Licardo, who earned $513,000 during the first reporting period of his 2014 campaign. . State Senator Dave Cortés, who came in second only to Liccardo in 2014, raised a comparable $175,000, according to city records.

“I think it’s a great demonstration to call for change and a greater focus on accountability at City Hall,” Mahan said in an interview.

Candidates planning to run in the June 2022 primary election for mayor of San Jose and five odd-numbered city council seats began fundraising on December 9, 2021. Contributions for mayoral candidates are limited to a total of $1,400 per person, corporation or non-profit organization.

Candidate campaign finance reports for December are not yet available on the city’s campaign reports website, so it remains to be seen where and from whom each candidate is getting their support and donations. Still, preliminary accounts given by the campaigns of top mayoral candidates indicate a competitive race ahead – with plenty of money available to spend on mailers, signs, consultants and staff.

Chavez, who is currently giving Mahan the toughest competition for cash donations, said in a statement that he thought his campaign was off to a “really good start.” The largest labor unions in the area have yet to endorse the candidates, meaning Chavez could face a considerable future fundraising bump if he chooses to support his campaign.

“I am deeply grateful and humbled by the overwhelming support of friends, family and supporters,” Chavez said in a statement.