No worries for Brat

So Dave Brat's campaign reported yesterday that he raised about $400k during the last quarter. I'm with Steve Albertson at The Bull Elephant: this is very good news for Brat. He's getting his money from individual donors, but that's not surprising; his out-of-nowhere victory against Cantor was sure to inspire fervent Tea Partiers to cut a check, at least during this past cycle. But it's a healthy amount, enough to dissuade any national Democrats from investing in the race. (Apparently his opponent Jack Trammell has only raised $155k - a fine amount for a Democrat in that district, but not enough to raise any national eyebrows.)

Brat is essentially winning a version of what political scientists call the "invisible primary" - the race for money among candidates before the actual primary vote. Here, instead of trying to fend off primary challengers, the Brat campaign needs to worry about national Democrats thinking he's a weak candidate and funneling money into his district. The current fundraising report should be enough to do that.

If you really have time to kill, you could look through Brat's FEC filing - or any FEC filing, for that matter. You can learn interesting tidbits of information. For example, it appears we know one Congressman who will take Brat under his wing if he wins: Thomas Massie of Kentucky, who has donated to Brat's campaign. If you want a clue as to how Dave Brat will operate in office, Massie is a Tea-Party backed freshman who symbolically voted against John Boehner in the 2013 Speaker elections. (Apparently he's angling for some kind of leadership role among "GOP rebels.")