WASHINGTON — Rep. Devin Nunes has more campaign cash on hand than any House Republican as he prepares for a 2022 reelection race that he’s favored to win.
The campaign committee for Nunes, R-Calif., who became a national political figure after aligning himself with former President Donald Trump, had more than $11.5 million on hand as of June 30.
That’s the third most of any House member, behind California Democratic Reps. Adam Schiff and Katie Porter — according to OpenSecrets, a nonpartisan campaign finance watchdog.
Between April and June, Nunes raised $2.67 million through four different fundraising committees he controls. Nunes and his campaign did not respond to requests for comment.
Nunes has two sources of influence propelling his fundraising: He is close to Trump and Trump supporters, and he’s in line to become chairman of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee if Republicans win a majority next year.
While corporations generally are shying away from giving to Republicans since the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, Nunes received money from political action committees representing insurance agents, accountants, Cigna, the National Federation of Independent Business, Koch Industries and others.
Unlike many congressional representatives, Nunes also draws from a national network of small dollar donors. In 2019-2020, more than half of his donations were less than $200 each, according to OpenSecrets.
Nunes built that constituency during the Trump administration. He gained a following among Trump supporters during special counsel Robert Mueller III’s investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and later during Trump’s impeachment over the former president’s attempt to pressure Ukraine into investigating President Joe Biden and his son.
Nunes derided both investigations as a “hoax.” Trump as he left office called Nunes a “hero” and awarded Nunes the Medal of Freedom.
This name recognition can work in two ways, said Dan Schnur, a politics professor at the University of Southern California who worked as a communications specialist for the presidential campaigns of Republicans John McCain, George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan.