Just days before the January 2022 campaign finance reporting deadline, Bowie Mayor Tim Adams, a wealthy businessman and one of two candidates for the Democratic nomination for office as comptroller, poured more than $1.8 million of his own money into his campaign coffers. This puts him slightly ahead of his opponent, Del. Brooke E. Lierman (D-Baltimore City), a stubborn, cash fundraiser.
Six months later, Adams hasn’t added a penny of her own money to her campaign account, while Lierman has continued to fundraise regularly except when she was banned from doing so during the three-month session. of the General Assembly. Five weeks before the July 19 primary, she now has the biggest war chest.
Considering Adams’ personal fortune, Lierman’s financial advantage may be fleeting. It all depends on whether Adams is willing to invest more of his money in what looks to be a tough run.
But Lierman’s take between April 12, the day after the legislative session ended, and June 7 was impressive: She raised $400,590 and ended the reporting period with $1,510,097 in hand. Adams, on the other hand, declared $965,812 to the bank.
“Women are used to extra hurdles in their path and this election is no different,” said Candace Dodson-Reed, Lierman’s campaign treasurer. “Brooke is an effective leader and problem solver. When obstacles arise, she overcomes them, and these fundraising numbers show what a formidable candidate she is.
Lierman raised $331,347 from individuals, showing 138 pages of individual contributions in his campaign finance report, from AB Associates to Catalina Zorc. She withdrew $29,000 from federal political action committees, including $6,000 each from three powerful unions (AFSCME, UNITE Here and the Pipefitters), plus $6,000 from U.S. Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.).
Lierman raised $18,100 from campaign committees in Maryland, including $6,000 each from Senate Speaker Bill Ferguson (D-Baltimore City), who represents the same legislative district as Lierman, and Del. Marc Korman (D-Montgomery), a Lierman leader in Annapolis on transit issues.
Lierman said he has spent $662,489 since mid-January, including $321,445 for Screen Strategies Media, a Democratic media company in Fairfax, Va., for television ads, and $172,051 for staff salaries and related expenses.
Notably, Lierman also reported returning $1,142 of previous campaign donations from Barbara Goldman Goldberg, a longtime Democratic activist and donor who attracted unwanted attention last December for suggesting in an email that a candidate black for governor might not be able to win.
Adams has spent even more than Lierman since mid-January: $909,647, according to his latest financial report. But he only reported $20,911 in cash received during that time – and of that, only $9,592 came from genuine contributions. The rest came from reimbursements paid to the campaign, including $6,669 from Devine Mulvey Longabaugh, a major national Democratic media company that handled some of Adams’ ads at the time he announced his candidacy.
What was different between Adams’ campaign finance report in January and the one he filed Tuesday is that he hasn’t made any loans to his campaign since January. He still owes $2,745,000 in debt from loans he made to his comptroller campaign and a previous unsuccessful campaign for state senate.
Adams has largely run his campaign on black-oriented radio stations, and he said he has paid $507,187 since January to Mosaic Communications, a company in Arlington, Va., for his radio spots. It paid $93,705 in staff salaries and related expenses during this period.
A survey conducted for the Baltimore Sun and the University of Baltimore in late May and early June showed Lierman leading Adams among likely Democratic primary voters, 28% to 19%. But 52% of those questioned say they are undecided.
Meanwhile, the lone Republican comptroller candidate, limited-time Harford County executive Barry Glassman, declared $477,371 on hand as of June 7 after raising $112,574 since mid-January and spending $101,227 $ during this period. Almost all of the money Glassman raised came from individual donations and ticket sales for fundraising events.
Glassman has run a lean operation so far and does not appear to be paying campaign staff salaries. His biggest reported expense was payments totaling $46,700 to Strategic Partners and Media, an Annapolis-based GOP consulting firm.
Glassman also said he made campaign contributions to other politicians totaling $1,225: $1,000 to Harford County Sen. Jason Gallion, $100 to Harford Sheriff Jeff Gahler, and $125 to Sen. Kathy Klausmeier, a Democrat. of Baltimore County.
Glassman’s campaign also brought in $49,286 in “outstanding bonds” — a bank loan to buy a campaign vehicle.