US Senate

January 9th, 2014

Jacobs Raises Over $400,000 for U.S. Senate Race in Just 42 Days

Mark Jacobs officially entered the U.S. Senate race a little more than a week before Thanksgiving.  In the 42 days between then and the end of the year, his campaign for the United States Senate raised over $400,000.  That’s not bad considering that he had to deal with holidays, which can make fundraising at the end of the year incredibly difficult.

Jacobs, a wealthy retired energy executive, was never going to struggle at funding his campaign, but the ability to also raise a significant amount of money for his campaign will only make him a more formidable candidate.

To put the $400,000 that Jacobs raised in perspective, Joni Ernst raised $252,397.45 in her first reporting period, which was almost $100,000 more than David Young who raised $155,785.00 for his first financial filing.  Matt Whitaker raised $115,091.00 in his first quarter as a U.S. Senate candidate.  Jacobs is often times described as a “self-funder,” meaning that can and likely will spend a lot of his own money on his campaign, but Jacobs’ strong initial fundraising numbers suggest that others are also investing in to his U.S. Senate candidacy.

We won’t know how much Jacobs himself has given his campaign and where he raised his money from until his financial disclosures are made public later this month. will comb through his disclosure, just like we did for the other candidates and report on who is donating to his campaign and how much money he was able to raise in the state.

While the amounts Jacobs raised and contributed himself will be of interest, so too will the amount he spent during the exploratory phase and first six weeks of his campaign.  His Republican opponents will also likely be interested in seeing where Jacobs was able to raise most of his money.

It is assumed that a large portion of the money Jacobs was able to raise will be from out-of-state donors, but it will be difficult for his opponents to make that an issue since 47 percent of Ernst’s money raised in the last period came from out-of-state sources, and 67 percent of the money David Young raised initially came from outside of Iowa.

The $400,000 that Jacobs raised is impressive when compared to what his opponents were able to raise in their first fundraising period.  As I have noted in other fundraising articles about this race, while the first reporting period makes a statement, it’s the second reporting period numbers that really tell you how well a campaign is going. will report on what the other candidates raised in the 4th quarter of 2013 when those numbers are made public.  A full analysis will be done once their disclosures are posted on the Federal Election Commission’s website.

Jacobs press release:

West Des Moines, Iowa – Jacobs for Iowa today announced that U.S. Senate candidate Mark Jacobs raised over $400,000 in the fourth quarter of 2013 from contributors.

Fundraising highlights include:

Widespread support from Iowans, with contributions received from 57 Iowa counties.
Jacobs raised more in six weeks than Joni Ernst, Matt Whitaker, Sam Clovis, and Scott Schaben raised combined in the entire third quarter.
Mark has raised more money from Iowans than any other candidate has reported to date.

“Today’s fundraising report is another indicator of the support Mark has received because of his jobs and opportunity message since entering the race for U.S. Senate,” said campaign manager Brian Dumas.

Dumas added, “When you look at the fact that Mark was able to raise this amount of money in only a six week period, truncated further by two major holidays, it is a strong signal that Mark is running a first-rate campaign, the kind of campaign it will take to defeat Bruce Braley.”

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About Mark Jacobs

A life-long Republican, Mark previously served as president and CEO of Reliant Energy, a Fortune 500 electric power company. During his time at Reliant Energy, he played an integral role in the turnaround of the company. Mark is the founder of Reaching Higher Iowa, an organization advocating for improved public education. Mark graduated from Roosevelt High School in Des Moines in 1980. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Southern Methodist University and an MBA from Northwestern University. Mark and his wife, Janet, have three children: Clark, Christy, and Sam. The family resides in West Des Moines.


About the Author

Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson is the founder and editor-in-chief of, a political news and commentary site he launched in March of 2009. Robinson’s political analysis is respected across party lines, which has allowed him to build a good rapport with journalist across the country. Robinson has also been featured on Iowa Public Television’s Iowa Press, ABC’s This Week, and other local television and radio programs. Campaign’s & Elections Magazine recognized Robinson as one of the top influencers of the 2012 Iowa Caucuses. A 2013 Politico article sited Robinson and as the “premier example” of Republican operatives across the country starting up their own political news sites. His website has been repeatedly praised as the best political blog in Iowa by the Washington Post, and in January of 2015, Politico included him on the list of local reporters that matter in the early presidential states. Robinson got his first taste of Iowa politics in 1999 while serving as Steve Forbes’ southeast Iowa field coordinator where he was responsible for organizing 27 Iowa counties. In 2007, Robinson served as the Political Director of the Republican Party of Iowa where he was responsible for organizing the 2007 Iowa Straw Poll and the 2008 First-in-the-Nation Iowa Caucuses. Following the caucuses, he created his own political news and commentary site, Robinson is also the President of Global Intermediate, a national mail and political communications firm with offices in West Des Moines, Iowa, and Washington, D.C. Robinson utilizes his fundraising and communications background to service Global’s growing client roster with digital and print marketing. Robinson is a native of Goose Lake, Iowa, and a 1999 graduate of St. Ambrose University in Davenport, where he earned degrees in history and political science. Robinson lives in Ankeny, Iowa, with his wife, Amanda, and son, Luke. He is an active member of the Lutheran Church of Hope.

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