The money behind the special election in Montana’s sole congressional district

Montana's At Large District

As people head to the polls today to vote in the race for the open seat in Montana’s sole congressional district, Issue One is looking at the money behind the election.

The seat was formerly held by Republican Rep. Ryan Zinke and opened when he was confirmed as Interior Secretary for the Trump administration earlier this year. Since then, a deluge of outside money and campaign contributions have flooded into the race that pits Republican businessman Greg Gianforte against folk musician Rob Quist, a Democrat:

  • $17 million is the approximate amount that has been pumped into the race between Republican Greg Gianforte and Democrat Rob Quist.

  • $6.75 million is the total amount that outside groups have spent in the race.
  • $6 million is the amount Democrat Rob Quist’s campaign says it has raised, mostly from small-dollar donations.
  • $5 million is the amount national Republicans have invested into the race, through the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), Republican National Committee (RNC) and Congressional Leadership Fund super PAC.
  • $4 million is the approximate amount Republican Greg Gianforte’s campaign has raised.
  • $1.5 million is the amount Republican Greg Gianforte, a multimillionaire, has loaned his campaign.
  • 85 percent is the portion of outside spending that has been negative.
  • 78 percent is the portion of outside spending that has attacked Democrat Rob Quist.
  • 5-to-1 is the ratio of spending by the NRCC on independent expenditures in the race compared to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC).
  • 3 is the number of GOP organizations that account for about three-fourths of the outside spending in the race.

(Source: Issue One analysis of campaign finance filings with the Federal Election Commission)