ROUNDUP: J.D. Vance Campaign Struggling, Still Paying Down Primary Debt and Breaking Promises On Accepting Corporate PAC Money
July 21, 2022
Columbus, OH – J.D. Vance continues to face fallout for flip-flopping on accepting corporate PAC money and for his abysmal fundraising numbers showing his campaign in debt. It’s just the latest reversal for Vance, who has also changed his position on Trump, antisemitism, racism, gun violence prevention, being a member of the elite, defending members of the elite, trade deals, Big Tech and white privilege.
Several new reports even revealed J.D. Vance’s campaign is still raising money to repay its primary debt – over two months after the primary – and before soliciting donors for the general election ahead. Vance may even be pocketing the funds himself to repay the $700,000 he loaned his campaign.
“J.D. Vance is a phony who will lie to anyone to further his own ambition. With his campaign still struggling to repay primary debt, Republicans sounding the alarm, and polls moving away from him, it’s clearer than ever that J.D. Vance is floundering,” said Michael Beyer, a spokesperson for the Ohio Democratic Party.
Read highlights below:
Cleveland.com: Ohio Senate candidate J.D. Vance makes about face on accepting corporate PAC money
July 20, 2022
- While running in the Republican primary race for U.S. Senate earlier this year, J.D. Vance flatly said he would not accept any contributions from corporate PACs.
- But a campaign finance report Vance’s campaign filed on Friday shows that Vance, since winning the Republican Senate nomination in May, has accepted tens of thousands of dollars from corporate PACs in the energy, insurance and real-estate industries.
- While on Steve Bannon’s podcast in January, Bannon, a far-right political figure in ex-President Donald Trump’s orbit who has positioned himself as a populist, quizzed Vance on the subject.
- “Not yet. We haven’t taken any yet,” Vance said. He paused briefly before cleaning up his answer by adding: “Sorry. I’m not going to take corporate PAC money.”
- But Friday’s campaign-finance report shows Vance accepted money from at least 11 corporate PACs, including those tied to name-brand companies. Among those that gave $5,000 contributions to Vance’s campaign committee: Continental Resources Inc., an Oklahoma oil-and-gas company; Rock Holdings, a Michigan-based company owned by Cleveland Cavaliers Dan Gilbert; Philips 66, the Houston-based energy company; Marathon Petroleum Company, Nextera Energy, based in Florida and Koch Industries.
- Also giving to Vance’s campaign were PACs for General Dynamics, the military contractor, which gave $1,000, and ExxonMobil, which gave $2,000.
- In addition, Vance’s campaign-finance report shows he took $6,000 from corporate PACs — for First American Financial Corp and Traveler’s Insurance — that specifically designated the money to help Vance pay off campaign debts. Vance’s campaign and its affiliated committees have accumulated $1 million in total debt, $700,000 of which is a personal loan Vance made to help seed his campaign.
The Vindicator: Vance changes tune in accepting corporate PAC money
July 21, 2022
- J.D. Vance, the Republican Senate nominee who said in January that he wouldn’t take corporate political action committee money, accepted more than $40,000 from those entities in the second quarter while focusing fundraising efforts on retiring his primary election debt.
- The decisions highlight Vance’s financial challenges in the Senate race with U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, his Democratic opponent, despite emerging as the winner of a bitter Republican primary and seen as the favorite candidate in a GOP-controlled state.
- When asked Jan. 6 by Steve Bannon on his “War Room” podcast if he took any corporate PAC money, Vance said: “Not yet, and we haven’t. We haven’t taken any yet.” A couple of seconds later he told Bannon: “Sorry, I’m not going to take corporate PAC money.”
- But with Vance’s various campaign committees raising considerably less than Ryan, the Republican nominee has changed his tune.
- Also, with Vance’s Senate campaign and Ohioans for J.D., a joint fundraising committee with his leadership PAC, showing it owes almost as much as it has in surplus, Vance’s main financial focus is on retiring his primary election debt with raising money for the Nov. 8 general election being secondary.
- Vance’s Senate campaign would have had a deficit if not for $700,000 he gave it while Ohioans for J.D. would have only a $91,626 surplus as of June 30 if it paid the outstanding debt it owes.
- Ohioans for J.D. transferred about $170,000 in the second quarter to his Senate fund to retire other campaign debt.
- The contribution link on Vance’s campaign website seeks money for Vance Victory — a joint fundraising committee created June 3 with his Senate campaign, the Ohio Republican Party and Working for Ohio, Vance’s leadership PAC.
- It states the first $2,900 of any contribution is “designated for 2022 primary election debt retirement” for his Senate fund.
- The next $2,900 is “designated for the general election” for the Senate fund, the next $10,000 toward the ORP and the final $5,000 for Working for Ohio.
- The same financial division with the primary debt prioritized was on an invitation to a June 28 fundraiser in Cincinnati with a $20,800 maximum ticket and a $5,800 minimum ticket as well as an invitation to a July 12 Zoom fundraiser with U.S. Sen. Rick Scott of Florida, the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, with no ticket amounts listed.
- That same financial breakdown is on a Monday fundraiser invitation in Washington, D.C., with U.S. Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, a former NRSC chairman, with tickets ranging from $500 to $5,000.
Roll Call: Ohio Senate candidate Vance asking donors to help pay debts
July 19, 2022
- As Ohio Senate candidate J.D. Vance fell far short of his Democratic opponent Tim Ryan in recent campaign donations, one of the Republican’s chief fundraising vehicles says it prioritizes paying off the campaign’s debt from the May 3 primary he won.
- The campaign’s biggest creditor: Vance himself.
- He loaned his campaign $700,000 for the primary, Federal Election Commission filings show.
- Vance Victory, a joint fundraising committee that splits donations between Vance’s Senate campaign and two other committees, states in its formula for dishing out donor funds that the first $2,900 of an individual contribution would be “designated for 2022 Primary Election debt retirement.” The next $2,900 would go to Vance’s campaign for the general election, with the next $10,000 to the Ohio Republican Party and the following $5,000 to Working for Ohio, Vance’s leadership political action committee.
- Vance’s campaign declined comment.
- In addition to the $700,000 that Vance lent his campaign for use in the primary, the campaign owed $183,000 to campaign vendors and supporters, such as $372 in travel costs owed to the campaign fund of Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley, according to a recent FEC filing.
- The joint fundraising committee “could raise funds to retire primary debt, including debt owed by the campaign to the candidate,” said campaign finance lawyer Brett Kappel.
- Vance, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump in his bid for the seat being vacated by GOP Sen. Rob Portman, had $628,000 in his campaign account on June 30 after raising $1 million from April through June. Ryan, meanwhile, had $3.6 million after raising $9.1 million, filings to the FEC last week showed.