Roger Misso will report one of the best opening fundraising quarters for a Syracuse-area congressional candidate when his campaign submits its financial records to the Federal Election Commission later this month.
Misso, D-Syracuse, announced shortly after midnight Monday that he raised more than $167,000 in his first fundraising quarter as a candidate. The quarter spanned from April 1 through June 30. Misso launched his campaign in early April.
Misso's campaign claimed it set a fundraising record by raising more money from individual donors than any other 24th Congressional District challenger has in their first quarter as a candidate. Former U.S. Rep. Dan Maffei, who challenged then-U.S. Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle in 2012, raised $200,818 in his first fundraising quarter after the launch of his campaign in August 2011. But $53,570 of that sum came from political action committees.
Individual donors gave more than $147,000 to Maffei's campaign in his first fundraising quarter of the 2012 election cycle.
Misso also compared his total to the most recent Democratic nominees in the 24th district: Dana Balter, who challenged Republican U.S. Rep. John Katko in 2018 and is seeking the Democratic nomination again in 2020, and Colleen Deacon, who ran for Congress in 2016.
Deacon, D-Syracuse, raised $131,841 in her first quarter as a candidate. Balter, a Syracuse Democrat, raised $13,876 in her first fundraising quarter, but she didn't declare her candidacy until the final two weeks of the period.
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While Misso's campaign finance report won't be available until later this month, he said small-dollar donors accounted for a majority of the contributions to his campaign.
Early in his campaign, Misso pledged to reject donations from corporate PACs and the fossil fuel industry.
"I heard from plenty of people who doubted that a small-town kid from the county line road could raise the kind of money to run for Congress," Misso said in a statement. "Breaking the first quarter record for NY-24 proves the doubters wrong — and shows that we are the campaign to beat John Katko in November 2020."
Misso's mark may not stand for long. Balter set the fundraising record for a Syracuse-area congressional challenger during the 2018 campaign. In one quarter, she raised more than $1.5 million. Throughout the 2018 election cycle, she received more than $2.5 million in contributions.
A third Democrat in the race, Francis Conole, was on pace for a record-setting quarter of his own. He announced in April that he raised $100,000 in his first four days as a candidate.
Balter and Conole, D-Syracuse, haven't said how much money they raised in the quarter. Both candidates, like Misso, launched their campaigns in April.