WASHINGTON, D.C. – The 2014 midterms are expected to be the most expensive in history. That’s right. The price tag will be just shy of $4 billion, according to projections released Wednesday by the Center for Responsive Politics. That’s about $13 million a day from Jan. 1 through the Nov. 4 Election Day – a pretty big sum even if you’re in Donald Trump’s tax bracket.
Where does it all come from? Well, candidates and political parties are slated to spend about $2.7 billion, and outside groups will kick in close to $900 million on their own, according to the CRP projections.
A Sunlight Foundation report released on Oct. 15 found that outside spending reported to the Federal Election Commission three weeks before the election was close to $500 million. Yes, that’s $400 million shy of CRP’s projections, but CRP says it is accounting for the typical last-minute surge that occurs in tight races.
“So far, at least $663.3 million has been spent by outside groups like super PACs and 527s (a figure that is current within the last 48 hours), but CRP’s projections based on the pattern in the 2012 cycle indicate that at least another $233.5 million remains to be spent in the 12 days before Nov. 4,” the center reported. “That’s a rate of $19.4 million a day.”
Republicans will outspend Democrats, according to the projections, albeit by a small margin. Conservative leaning groups and candidates will spend about $1.92 billion, with Democrats and liberal-leaning committees coming in at $1.76 billion. Spending by right leaning House and Senate campaign committees as well as by secretive outside, or “dark money” groups, is also expected to outdo their liberal counterparts—but by a much wider margin.