O’Rourke’s fundraising {triples Cruz’s} in Texas Senate race

O’Rourke’s fundraising {triples Cruz’s} in Texas Senate race

Beto O'Rourke raised a record $38.1 million in the third quarter, the campaign announced Friday, almost tripling his overall fundraising haul for the cycle.

The money O'Rourke reportedly raised from July through September shattered the previous record for a Senate candidate set by New York Republican Rick Lazio, who raised $22 million in one quarter during his unsuccessful 2000 run against Clinton, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics.

"This is a historic campaign of people: all people, all the time, everywhere, every single day - that's how we're going to win this election", O'Rourke said in a statement.

Despite the fundraising haul, the latest Quinnipiac poll shows Cruz with a solid nine-point lead and higher favorability ratings.

Fundraising at this pace is rarely seen even in presidential campaigns.

Cruz made the announcement while campaigning Friday in Houston.

"Texans are going to vote for our values", he said. But being so flush allows O'Rourke to add staffers and try to motivate low-frequency voters in Texas, which traditionally has one of the lowest turnout rates in the nation. He also criticized Cruz for supporting Trump's trade policies, which he said have hurt the Texas economy.

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While O'Rourke has bought in more cash, Cruz has gained momentum in the polls. Ted Cruz speaks to supporters inside Baker Boys BBQ in Gonzales, Texas, Sept. 15, 2018.

Unlike Cruz, O'Rourke has banned donations from corporate political action committees, making the size of his campaign war chest that much more impressive. O'Rourke had the advantage in that category at the end of June, with $14 million in the bank to Cruz's $10.4 million.

All that money ensures both candidates will be able to continue flooding the airwaves in major media markets around Texas.

O'Rourke has refused to go negative, instead recently recording a 30-second TV spot in real-time - including doing multiple takes - on Facebook live.

The figure is more than triple what Cruz has raised, reflecting the intense Democratic efforts to win the two Senate seats the party needs to get back control of the upper chamber and mount renewed opposition to President Donald Trump.

O'Rourke was in North Texas Thursday where he downplayed the results of the poll.

That's part of what has helped him make the race surprisingly close in heavily Republican Texas, but polls over the past few weeks showed Cruz opening a significant lead over the US representative from El Paso.

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