EXCLUSIVE - Former Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt is bursting out of the gate when it comes to fundraising for his Republican bid to try and unseat Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto in the 2022 midterm elections.
Laxalt hauled more than $1.4 million in the six weeks from his mid-August Senate campaign launch through the end of September, which marked the close of the third quarter of fundraising, according to figures shared first with Fox News on Tuesday. Laxalt’s campaign also reported receiving contributions from all 50 states, and showcased that they had over $1.25 million in cash on hand as of the start of October.
"Folks across Nevada are extremely dissatisfied with the current direction Masto and her cronies in Washington are taking us and they’re ready for a change," Laxalt said in a statement. "Our campaign started with an incredible burst of momentum that continues to grow every time Masto sides with Bernie Sanders and Chuck Schumer over the voters in this state."
Laxalt, who completed a 2,500-mile, 17-country swing around Nevada in the weeks after his campaign launch, has been endorsed by a bunch of top Republicans, including former President Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, as well as numerous Nevada GOP leaders.
Republicans need a net gain of just one seat in next year’s midterms to recapture the Senate majority they lost when they were swept in January’s twin Senate runoff elections. The GOP’s playing plenty of defense – they’re defending 20 of the 34 seats up for grabs in 2022, including defending five open seats, with two of them in the key battlegrounds of North Carolina and Pennsylvania. But they also see strong pickup potentials in the swing states of Arizona, Georgia, New Hampshire and Nevada.
The latest polls in the Silver State indicate a close contest in a potential Cortez Masto-Laxalt general election showdown next year.
But beating Cortez Masto in the key western battleground state won’t be easy. The senator, who chaired the Senate Democrats' reelection arm last cycle, had a healthy $6.6 million in her campaign coffers at the beginning of July. The senator’s yet to announce her July-September third quarter fundraising figures.
Cortez Masto, a former two-term Nevada attorney general, defeated Republican Joe Heck by two and a half points in the 2016 race to succeed retiring longtime Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid. She made history as the first Latina elected to the Senate.
But as first reported by Fox News last week, retired Army officer and Afghanistan War veteran Sam Brown, raised over $1 million from his campaign launch in mid-July through the end of September, an impressive haul for a first time candidate.
Business owner Sharelle Mendenhall and Bill Hockstedler, a health care executive and Air Force veteran, are also running for the Republican Senate nomination.