U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-El Paso, announced Friday that he raised over $2.2 million for his U.S. Senate campaign in the first 45 days of 2018.
The massive haul is almost as much as O'Rourke raked in during the previous, twice-as-long period — the fourth quarter of 2017. O'Rourke easily outraised U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, during that 92-day stretch, $2.4 million to $1.9 million.
Cruz has maintained an advantage over O'Rourke in money in the bank, though the gap has been narrowing. O'Rourke did not release his latest cash-on-hand figure Friday, but after the fourth quarter, it was $4.6 million to Cruz's $7.3 million.
O'Rourke, who is not accepting contributions from political action committees, said Friday that the $2.2 million total came from over 43,000 donations.
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"This is how we are winning this race, getting our Democracy back and doing something really important for Texas and critical for our country," he said in a statement.
Ahead of the March 6 primary, congressional candidates in Texas have until Thursday to disclose to the Federal Election Commission their campaign finances for the first month and a half of this year. Cruz has not released his numbers — but he recently acknowledged O'Rourke's fundraising strength.
"It’s true my Democratic opponent is raising a lot of money," Cruz told reporters Saturday in New Braunfels. "We’re not going to take it for granted. That’s a manifestation of the energy on the extreme left."