NY13 Blog; Retaking NY-13 from Rep. Vito Fossella

Following the corruption, ineffectiveness and hypocrisy of Rep. Vito Fossella.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Vito Fossella's vulnerabilities: campaign expenditures

I previously wrote about Fossella's contributions per quarter and trends that show that he brought in significantly less funds in 2007 than he had in 2005 and that in election years he tends to bring in less. This suggests this could be one of his lowest fund raising cycles. Now we take a look at this expenditures.

The first trend to notice is that during election years (red) Fossella spends much more money than he does is on the non-election years (orange). This is typical of all campaigns. I am pointing it out though because you need to look ahead and see how this is going to hurt his campaign. He nearly doubles his expenditure rate in election years, which we are in now. So we should expect to see his expenditures drastically increasing and in fact we have already seen this happening in 2007. This cycle he has had the highest expenditure rate in the second, third and fourth quarter in a non election year.

Fossella's expenditures for the first quarter are already over $150,000 and we should expect that to only go up. This becomes problematic for him considering last quarter he spent more money than he raised. If this continues his cash on hand will actually start to quickly drop, as it did in the first quarter. We saw this happen in 2006 and is not a rare event. In 2006 his expenditures outpaced his contributions, the difference being then he was sitting on $600,000 cash compared to his current level of $249,000. His current fund raising drought and spending problem leads to him being forced to ask Dick Cheney to financially bail him out. Oh and the NRCC.

What is curious about Fossella's recent spending habits is that none of this is being spent on any real campaigning costs. He is not actively running ads. He is not actively canvassing or doing literature drops. He has raised $850,000, yet only has $249,000 of that left. So how is he burning through $600,000 in non campaign costs? What does he have to show for it, I am not sure. I am certainly happy that he is doing it and will make it easier to take him on this fall if he continues to display this type of 'fiscal conservatism'. The question for his donors to then ask is how does he afford to actually campaign when the race really gets under way and legitimate expenses start taking off.

So he is having trouble keeping up with his past fund raising levels. Now he is having trouble cutting his massive spending habits. Fossella is vulnerable and most of it is due to his own failures.

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