[SeMissourian.com] Fair ~ 58°F  
River stage: 27.82 ft. Rising
Saturday, May 23, 2015

Sowers shrinking fundraising gap with Emerson

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Tommy Sowers
In the first three months of the year, Democratic Congressional challenger Tommy Sowers continued to rely on donors across the nation to fund his campaign, taking 59 percent of his donations from outside Missouri.

But a look at the total amounts raised show that he beat incumbent U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Cape Girardeau, in one area her campaign uses to question whether he is connecting with voters -- money raised within Missouri.

Sowers was able to best Emerson in fundraising within the state in part because he raised more than twice as much as the Republican incumbent from individual donors. Except for $650, all of Sowers' donations came from individuals. He raised $294,562 during the first three months of the year.

Jo Ann Emerson
He also increased the share of his contributions coming from within the state, from 34 percent of itemized individual donations in the report filed in January to 39 percent in the report filed last week. Including figures supplied by Sowers' campaign manager Jonathan Feifs on unitemized contributions, Sowers' share from within the state is 41 percent.

Emerson, who took in $222,651 from Jan. 1 to March 31, received $137,151 in donations from individuals and $85,500 in donations from political action committees. Of her individual contributions, $96,631, or 70.4 percent, came from within the state. And almost 68 percent of her individual contributions from within Missouri came from donors living in the Eighth Congressional District.

In the quarterly disclosure report filed last week with the Federal Election Commission, Sowers listed $96,785.77 in donations of more than $200 from within the state.

Feifs provided figures that showed an additional $23,202.50 in contributions from within the state, bringing the total to $119,988.27. Sowers raised $38,272.50 from donors living within the district, according to the figures provided by Feifs.

Federal law only requires disclosure of donor information on contributions of $200 or more.

Emerson, who listed every donor regardless of the amount given, showed 774 donations from individuals. Some are for people who gave more than once, but Emerson's campaign said it included 495 people from within the Eighth District who are supporting her re-election.

Sowers' report named fewer than three dozen contributors from within the district, noted Jeff Connor, speaking on behalf of Emerson's campaign.

"The reaction is that he is showing exceptionally shallow support in the Eighth District," Connor said Friday. Emerson "could fill the Arena Building in Cape with her supporters, and he couldn't fill the back room at Dexter Bar-B-Que."

Feifs, however, said voters care more about whether a candidate is raising money from individual donors or "special interest" political action committees.

Sowers is proud that he has been endorsed by groups like VoteVets and retired Gen. Wesley Clark's WesPAC, Feifs said. Both organizations urge their supporters to make individual contributions to selected candidates. Sowers is a former U.S. Army Major with special forces experience.

"I think people all around the country realize we need more people like Tommy in Congress," Feifs said.

And Sowers' strong effort -- he has the best funded challenge Emerson has ever faced -- is starting to gain traction with Missouri Democrats, Feifs said.

"People statewide see that she is a vulnerable candidate," Feifs said. "And the more endorsements we receive and the more people learn about Tommy the more they believe that."

Sowers was also able to close the gap between himself and Emerson in campaign funds on hand at the end of a quarter. He raised more and spent less than she did. As of March 31, Emerson had $504,896 in the bank and Sowers had $465,326.

Emerson lagged on fundraising during the quarter in part because of the busy Congressional schedule, Connor said. Sowers, meanwhile, can campaign full time and has made trips to both coasts for fundraisers, he said.

"Jo Ann has a full-time job as a member of Congress, and she is not going to compromise her duty to her constituents," Connor said. "Her opponent is a full-time candidate who can fly to New York or Los Angeles for fundraisers every week if he wants to. Jo Ann's focus remains on Southern Missouri and the people she represents."

That is an excuse for lagging fundraising, Feifs said. "It is a campaign desperate to land a blow."

Sowers is unopposed for the Democratic nomination. Emerson is being challenged by Texas County farmer Bob Parker in the Aug. 3 GOP primary. Parker reported his best fundraising quarter, taking in $8,015.

Larry Bill of Jackson, who is seeking a spot on the ballot as an independent candidate, reported raising no additional money. Rick Vandeven, who is the Libertarian Party candidate, has not filed any committee paperwork with the FEC.



Pertinent address:

U.S. Capitol Building, Washington, D.C.

Fact Check
See inaccurate information in this story?

Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. If you feel that a comment is offensive, please Login or Create an account first, and then you will be able to flag a comment as objectionable. Please also note that those who post comments on semissourian.com may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.

Looks like he raised most of his cash from East and West Coast liberals. Wonder what he's telling them?

-- Posted by northside8 on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 2:46 PM

"Turn the tide in Washington"? Emerson IS the tide in Washington. No more mulligans after 14 years of failure.

-- Posted by mudbug on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 2:53 PM

I try to be positive, but mudbug, "Amen".

Larry Bill. Independent Conservative Candidate for Congress, 8th District, Missouri

visit: http://larrybill.com/a-recent-speech-whe...

-- Posted by nolimitsonthought on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 3:17 PM

Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner by the name of mudbug.

Tommy Sowers is raising more money than Emerson and it is coming from individuals like me in the Eighth District.

It looks like the ordinary people are staging a revolt. Look! Here they come wielding torches, pitchforks and axe handles.

-- Posted by Hominy on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 3:20 PM

Well, it isn't from Wellpoint/Blue Cross or Mitt Romney: http://bit.ly/jkxLB

-- Posted by 2manyInsiders on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 3:45 PM

They are all bloodsuckers representing special interest groups and could give a rip about the proles they supposedly represent.

Crooks all.

-- Posted by Hawker on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 3:49 PM

Ah, a beltway comopany at nictusa.com That has nothing to do with the Federal Election Commission reports.

Tsk tsk

NIC Technologies, INC

Mark Waddell

1477 Chain Bridge Rd Suite 101

McLean, VA 22101


Phone: 571 277 7839

-- Posted by 2manyInsiders on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 3:52 PM

Stunning: 92% of Tommy Sowers' donors live outside the 8th district. Only 38 people in SE Missouri donated to his campaign!

-- Posted by cjb2m5 on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 4:15 PM

Most of Emersons funds are from PACs.

-- Posted by Grit on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 4:17 PM

Stunning: 100% of Tommy Sowers' donors agree that America needs to rid Congress of do-nothings like Emerson. Only 9 more slots before SE Missouri is the absolute poorest district in America!

Keep up the great work Jo Ann!

-- Posted by mudbug on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 4:40 PM

Let me try to lend some perspective to you all by saying that it is an utter waste of everyone's time to blame Emerson for the disaster in our nation's capital. Mudbug is apparently ignorant of the fact that Democrats control the House, the Senate and the White House. They've tripled the national debt in four years and will double it again in another ten. Americans' taxes are going up. Unemployment isn't going down. It is very clear that the stimulus isn't stimulative. And it is precisely the fault of liberal elitists that we are in this mess. They think they can tell us how to live our lives, pulling the strings of big government at their leisure. It's complete madness, and we would all be fools to add one more Democrat to Nancy Pelosi's majority in the House.

-- Posted by Dear Reader on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 6:58 PM

I am concerned about what Tommy Sowers is telling the liberal elites on the East and West Coast to raise all of this money. His main goal is to get elected and be the pawn of liberals like Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama, and Harry Reid. He will sell our us out the first chance he gets. The fact that he actually supports the Obama-care bill is mind boggling. His support of the worst bill ever ensures he would be the worst Congressman ever from Missouri.

-- Posted by ResAdjudicata on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 8:13 PM


1st Quarter Donations, Sowers 38 inside the 8th District. Jo Ann Emerson, 495.

-- Posted by northside8 on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 8:27 PM

Look at the data. Burn rate > funding rate. Game over, man. Reporting < $200 donors and counting multiple small contributions: precious! God bless y'all, and I hope you have better luck in finding employment than the brothers and sisters of this district. Best, Mike Glodo

-- Posted by 2manyInsiders on Fri, Apr 16, 2010, at 9:06 PM

Someone supporting Jo Ann Gladney and bashing liberals from the East Coast is the most ironic thing I have ever seen. Mrs. Gladney IS an East Coast liberal. Based on the ratings of groups like Americans for Democratic Action, American Conservative Union, National Right to Life Committee and National Taxpayers Union she is the most liberal Republican in the U.S. House of Representatives.

It is time for a Missourian to represent the Eighth Congressional District. Someone who was born here, raised here, LIVED AND WORKED HERE and plans to retire here. Someone who cares about us, our children and our futures. Someone who doesn't see us as nothing more than a ticket to a seat in Congress. That is what I hope and pray for. You Gladney supporters can have another sip of Kool-Aid.

-- Posted by Hominy on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 12:44 AM

Another article on Sowers' fundraising.


"Sowers was quick as always to trumpet his fundraising results. But there are a few minor things that his press releases neglect to mention.To start with, Tommy Sowers raised two thirds of his money from out of state: looking at his finance reports alone it would be impossible to tell where he is running."

Only one third from Missouri, which is not necessarily one third from the 8th district.

'Dear Reader', When Emerson votes along with the democrat majority on bailouts, cash for clunkers, etc., she is every bit as responsible for the mess we're in as they are.

-- Posted by Audit The Fed on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 7:53 AM

Oh, and another thing that the Sowers camp is keeping under wraps. He's a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. (which helps explain his coastal fundraising)

This is a group of super rich globalists who want a "one world" government headed by the United Nations and giving up American sovereignty.

Of course, while she's not a member, Emerson followed orders from the globalists when she voted yes on the banker bailout of Oct. '08.


-- Posted by Audit The Fed on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 8:10 AM

Now THIS is an article to be proud of! Yes indeed. Just what we want to represent us in DC. Anyone soooo proud of raising money and cutting their oppositions money lead. Yes sir, that is where its at. SHOW ME THE MONEY. Yep, that is what is most important in this day of high unemployment, high deficits, lagging government confidence, high mortgage defaults. Yep, show me the money....

-- Posted by LiveAnotherDay on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 8:48 AM

Since fundraising is the new news (and not positions on the issues of the day: cap and trade, skyrocketing deficit, healthcare overhaul) I thought everyone might like to see this other inner working of a campaign article.


The Sowers campaign is getting this "donation" from Organizing for America. If you want to go to the OFA website it is simply www.barackobama.com

Maybe Sowers will release a "prepared statement"about how he is proud to have the support of an organization that is determined to address the "global climate crisis" (http://www.barackobama.com/issues/). I however am not holding my breath... that would be too close to taking a position on cap and trade - THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE FACING SOUTHEAST MISSOURI.

-- Posted by everest on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 9:23 AM

Hey Mike Glodo, can you actually vote in this election or are you like most of Sowers supporters? Obnoxious, but in the end irrelevant.

-- Posted by northside8 on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 6:41 PM

And wasn't it a nice day today? Dear Northside. Aware, local, and concerned. Just around Carbondale, IL. I will do what I can to tell MO8 what's is going on. I fancy myself aware and local, rather than obnoxious. The heck do I know? I grew up here, moved back, and found the economy had cratered.

-- Posted by 2manyInsiders on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 11:26 PM

Oh,.. what happened with Florsheim? Did Jo Ann Emerson get funds from Blue Cross? Who just tossed out over a hundred people??? The people want to know! Peace to you. And I await, with #glee, your spin.

-- Posted by 2manyInsiders on Sat, Apr 17, 2010, at 11:34 PM

Sowers got lots of donations from individuals, almost half from Missourians. People in other places (regardless of how you try to demonize them) are supporting his campaign. Lots of retired military, donations from red states like Texas and Utah. He has pledged to work for ordinary people in the 8th district. Look at Emerson's voting record to see how she supports us. She votes NO on almost everything. And the financial crisis and unemployment came about before Obama was elected. 750,000 people were losing their jobs every month. Unemployment will rise with a trend like that. It's now starting to turn around and Missouri added jobs last month. We need JOBS, not playing the blame game.

-- Posted by josietree on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 5:46 AM

Thanks Spaniard but save your money.

We may not have as many overpaid bankers as y'all do out east. And we may not have as many movie stars running around and reality TV show jobs as they do on the left coast. But we kind of like our lives here and don't need y'all to try to buy another congressional district for nancy pelosi.

We know what to expect from the Pelosi majority: healthcare mandates, gun restrictions, higher taxes, higher energy bills, cap and trade.

If sowers wants to distance himself from the Pelosi record he can always do so... But then where would his money come from?

Dixie Dem won't vote for Pelosi


-- Posted by everest on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 9:22 AM

Your elected republican officials in Jeff City and DC wants to keep the republican voters focused on gays, guns, and abortion so they blow up with hate. While that is going on with the voters, your repubicans officials are busy giving your country to corporations and killing the unions. If all you care about is having guns, bashing the gays,and trying to fix abortion, then in the end you will get what you deserve. That is living under a dictatorship run by corporations obtained by republicans. It does not matter that Joann has received more money from the 8th district, that is because the Emerson name has been known in the 8th district for 30 years since first her husband and now her. It is not because the Emerson name has brought so much to people who need jobs.I know that any Republican hates paying taxes, but they enjoy the same aminities that Democrats enjoy. You can not have good schools, clean air, super highways, and on and on without paying taxes. This race is not against Joann, it is for having one less republican to give away our country. I believe in fair wages so everyone can pay for their necessities including health insurance. You can not live on minimum

wAGE. The people who have more should be willing to pay more taxes and thank GOD that they were given a chance to have more money.

The voters of US better wake up; GOD is trying to tell you what is going to happen, but you are not listening. Just like when Noah tried to tell the people a flood was coming and they ignored him.

Given a chance, for a long enough time, Democrats will make the 8th district better. Read the book The Family. Remember repubican voters, while you are busy exploding with hate, your elected republicans is giving your country away. By the way, that is the way they planned it.

-- Posted by Christ Return on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 9:46 AM

Speak for yourself, everest! IF you "kinda like your life" here in 8th District obviously YOU haven't seen your job depart for Mexico or India. Or been unable to get healthinsurance due to pre-existing conditions. You must be one of those 'lucky' ones... but probably just one of those who are on the government dole in JAE's office working her campaign.

For years the JAE supporters have turned a blind eye to just WHERE Emerson/Gladney gets her campaign monies. The final result... getting re-elected.. was much more important than the tons of lobbyists money rolling into her coffers. NOW, suddenly, OH MY!... a candidate has taken money from OUTSIDE Missouri! STOP THE PRESSES! Something fishy is going on here!?! Doesn't it strike anybody else that it is a tad hypocritical on the part of semoguy85 and the others to start hollering NOW about 'outside' money?

-- Posted by Tex on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 10:49 AM

Dear Reader: Your perspective is a wee bit off center! Granted, the Democrats presently control the House, Senate and White House. HOWEVER, the downward plunge of economy began during the last term of GW Bush. In fact, the economy was tanking so badly in 2007/2008 that Bush pushed upon us the first banking stimulus... with NO oversight. Once the elections were held and it was revealed precisely how BAD things were, economists from both parties endorsed the plan of stimulus packages to turn the country around. Granted, it has been a slow go. But, many of the banks have started repaying their 'loans', the stock market has rebounded somewhat, the jobs market is making a slow but sure comeback and in general the 'expert economists' are saying we have started back up. It is only the repubs and Palin now that are screaming "The sky is fallin', the sky is fallin'". More importantly, the American people have once again begun to take charge of their finances, to tighten their belts, cut back on living on credit and begun to start saving accts. In addition, many have at long last looked around and noticed that there DOES appear to be something going on with our climate; just maybe there is something to this far-fetched idea of global warming!?! But there are still others screaming bloody murder about 'cap and trade'; NO, NO, NO! But WHERE are THEIR alternative plans? What ideas do THEY have for improving the situation? If all they can do is scream "NO!", I cannot take them too seriously. JAE has been in congress for a long time... but I cannot find that she has done much... if anything other than parrot the GOP party line of "NO", and give tax breaks to the wealthiest 1% of the population. To be truthful here, I am in that 1% but, strangely enough, feel that if I'm given much, I should be willing to pay for the clean air, clean water, adequate highways and bridges, protection by law enforcement, etc., etc. Apparently few others in that bracket feel like that or else they fail to speak up.

I used to sit quietly and watched as administrations came and went, rolled with the flow as it were. No more! When people like me just go along... we end up with representation which is lousy and ineffective. No, this time I'll be an active participant; I'll speak up, give money to Sowers, Carnahan, Montee and others around the country that seem willing to work on behalf of the people and not corporations.

-- Posted by Tex on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 11:22 AM

Finally, Emerson's position on the Economy - Coming Soon! http://bit.ly/bxe2Ae

-- Posted by 2manyInsiders on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 1:11 PM

Just browsing around and found a political contribution of $2300 to the Presidential campaign of Obama. Guess who the donor was? It was non other than Ron Gladney a partner with the law firm of Bartley Goffstein. Also, the husband of JoAnn Emerson. It was given on Dec 15, 2007.

Very interesting.

-- Posted by howdydoody on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 1:35 PM

Emerson herself gives money to Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, one of the most pro-abortion Democratic reps in the house. Look it up.

Hypocrisy is nothing new to these people.

-- Posted by mudbug on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 5:26 PM

We do live in one of the poorest congressional districts in the nation, but that is no fault of Congresswoman Emerson it was here long before she took office matter of fact it was like that when I was a kid, that is the way it is, bottomline it is solely left up to the people if they want to change their way of living and progress forward with good paying jobs or stay the same course from sixty years ago.

-- Posted by swampeastmissouri on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 6:10 PM

Read this article about civility:


Larry Bill, Independent Conservative Candidate for Congress, 8th District, Missouri

-- Posted by nolimitsonthought on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 6:41 PM

Get a grip, swampeastmissouri.

For the sake of argument suppose that we have always been poor. Have we always been the tenth poorest congressional district out of 435 in the United States? If so then someone is going to have to prove that to me, because unless someone does then I will not believe it.

Have women in the Eighth District always had the lowest, let me repeat that, LOWEST median income in any congressional district in the United States? That is correct. Women in the Eighth District have lower median incomes than women in blighted inner cities and the rust belt of America. In the Eighth District Women are 435 out of 435 - dead last. Don't tell me it is their fault because women in the Eighth District work hard and are smart, but there are no jobs in our district.

Perhaps 30 years of Emerson/Gladney representation might have something to do with our plight.

-- Posted by Hominy on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 7:10 PM

Hominy: What brought the women issue in to it, many women are hard workers we just need good paying jobs for all that want to work and have good job skills Mrs Emerson has said that many times herself. I strongly believe in equal pay my friend.

-- Posted by swampeastmissouri on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 7:27 PM

Who in the world said anything about equal pay for equal work? Show me someone who does not support equal pay for equal work and I'll show you a dinosaur.

Let me explain what most people who read my post understand. There are not enough decent paying jobs traditionally performed by women in the Eighth District - unless you serve in the U.S. House of Representatives and take junkets to five star restaurants in Scotland. Men are doing all they can, but rank 425 out of 435. Women are doing all they can, but rank 435 out of 435. It is not a lack of effort on our part it is a lack of performance on the part of "our Representative."

-- Posted by Hominy on Sun, Apr 18, 2010, at 9:02 PM

Is it possible that not many people within the district donated to Sowers because they don't have the money to give? His top supporters may be the working poor or the unemployed who have not benefitted from our representation in DC.

Emerson has a lot of support within the district, but the money she raised still came from a small portion of the population. Could it be from those few special interests who have benefitted from her representation?

-- Posted by qzerp on Mon, Apr 19, 2010, at 9:55 AM

Tex, Hominy, and Qzerp: Thanks for telling it just like it is. We in the 8th District should be PROUD that we have one of our own to run for this office. More power to Sowers!

-- Posted by Nettie Can on Mon, Apr 19, 2010, at 2:13 PM

Beautiful day in DC to shoot a movie. Hope to get out before the rain.

-- Posted by 2manyInsiders on Tue, Apr 20, 2010, at 8:42 PM

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration:

Related subjects