Bennett, unlike other local Dems, can attract funds from the big money people and DCCC. Other candidates will just confuse the folks in DC.
Well, Sam Bennett's first campaign finance report is in, and it appears that all those promises from political forecaster Long were just pipe dreams. Bennett has less cash on hand than any other candidate seeking a congressional seat in Pennsylvania, except for Congressman Todd Platts, an incumbent with no announced opponent.
Of the $63,022.56 total that Sam pulled in with her trusty garden rakes, there's no DCCC money at all! Most of her $24,000 in PAC money comes from unions. Any Democrat who announced as early as Bennett could easily match that.
So if it's not money, why are party bosses so quick to gather round Rendell? Bennett told Bill Cahir in May that she's already locked up the support of Rick Daugherty, chairman of the Lehigh County Democratic Committee, and T.J. Rooney, former chairman of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party. Why has no one contradicted or qualified this?
According to the Properties of Merit webpage, Governor Rendell and the Pennsylvania DCED are credited with grants in excess of $100,000. A Morning Call editorial tells us "Mr. Rendell has helped Ms. Bennett by appearing at the annual POM recognition events. In the 2005 Democratic mayoral primary here, he annoyed other Allentown Democrats by singling out Ms. Bennett for campaign support in the primary."
Now, thanks to the FEC, we know that Rendell has given $1,000, from his own pocket, to fuel Bennett's misguided congressional aspirations. This is highly unusual, especially from a governor who refused to endorse a mayoral candidate in Philly, his own city.
I like Rendell. He's a likable guy. But he should keep his Philly nose out of Pennsylvania's 15th congressional district. Ed, let us make our own mistakes!
Oopsie! TJ Rooney is a former state rep, but is still the state chair.