Democratic consultants benefited financially from the competitive governor's race in Virginia with the McAuliffe campaign spending some $13 million with a single firm.
With New Jersey's gubernatorial race a forgone conclusion, donors largely ignored state Sen. Barbara Buono's (D) campaign. As a result, her roughly $2.5 million budget provided few substantial contracts.
Her biggest outlay went to AKPD Message and Media, which received some $1.3 million in mid October for a media buy. Other firms had more modest contracts. Sheehan Associates, the Feldman Group, New Blue Interactive, 73rd Street Partners, Market Me, NGP VAN, Blue State Digital, DSPolitical and others were paid fees ranging from a few hundred dollars to low five figures.
In Virginia, meanwhile, some Democratic consultants took in millions as Gov.-elect Terry McAuliffe and Republican Ken Cuccinelli remained locked in a tight race right up to Election Day Tuesday.
According to the Virginia Public Access Project (VPAP), McAuliffe spent more than $3.1 million on consultants and campaign staff. On TV and radio ads, he dropped more than $13 million, with the majority of that going through Philadelphia-based Shorr Johnson Magnus and Potomac Waves. Other winners were Bully Pulpit Interactive, which took in around $1.5 million, and pollster Peter D. Hart, whose firm took in at least $322,000.
In total, McAuliffe raised about $34 million for his campaign, according to the non-partisan VPAP, which tracks campaign spending. It helped that Virginia is one of only four states with no campaign contribution limits.