Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown raised $6.6 million in the last three months, according to numbers first shared with POLITICO, a huge sum which will be critical in his challenging reelection campaign.
And the three-term Democrat has $14.6 million on hand heading into what’s likely to be the toughest race of his career. He’s a top target in the battle for the Senate majority, as his state has drifted right over the past decade and left him as the only statewide elected Democrat.
Brown will face the winner of a GOP primary featuring Secretary of State Frank LaRose, state Sen. Matt Dolan and businessman Bernie Moreno, who is endorsed by former President Donald Trump. Dolan and Moreno have the ability to significantly self-fund their campaigns.
“Sherrod Brown is fighting for Ohio while his opponents fight for the title of largest self-funder — that’s why Sherrod continues to have the momentum in this race,” said campaign manager Rachel Petri.
Brown’s fundraising will be critical, as candidates get better rates on ads than super PACs that may support his GOP opponent. And Brown will have to do a lot on his own to win Ohio, which is unlikely to be contested by President Joe Biden and has backed Trump in two successive elections.
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee also announced this week it was investing more than $10 million in the field in Ohio and Montana, another red state where Biden will likely lose. Democrats currently hold a 51-49 majority. But the retirement of Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) almost certainly gives Republicans an automatic pick-up, making the reelection campaigns of Brown and Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) absolutely vital for keeping the majority.