Fundraising Gap Continues to Widen in State Senate Race

Assemblymember Susan Eggman/former Modesto mayor Jim Ridenour

Both candidates for State Senate District 5, which encompasses all of San Joaquin and some of Stanislaus, filed their financial summaries for the period of July 1 to September 19 on Thursday. Assemblymember Susan Eggman continued to increase her financial advantage over Modesto mayor Jim Ridenour, a trend already evidenced by each candidate’s volume of donations over $1,000. Unlike smaller amounts, which are disclosed in summaries such as on Thursday, those contributions must be reported as they come in.

From July 1 to September 19, Eggman received $373,000 in monetary contributions. She also took in an additional $11,000 in nonmonetary services, mostly from the California Democratic Party.

Eggman spent a little more than $217,000 from July 1 to September 19 and has almost $69,000 in unpaid campaign bills. This is not uncommon, as campaigns often have unpaid expenditures by the time a filing deadline comes around. Eggman began the period on July 1 with $316,000, finishing on September 19 with almost $473,000.

Ridenour did not do quite as well, having also lagged behind Eggman in the primary. He took in close to $20,000 and spent $15,800 for an ending balance of $9,100. However, he did make some improvements overall, as he began the period with only $5,400.

The gap between Ridenour and Eggman has already been evidenced by the volume of donations over $1,000 over each. As of Friday night, Eggman has accumulated 62 for a total of $541,000 (including both monetary and nonmonetary contributions), while Ridenour has received 10 for $12,500.

The donor groups for each candidate have also been markedly different. Ridenour’s contributors have been basically entirely within the district. The one possible exception is former congressman Jeff Denham’s 2022 campaign for lieutenant governor, which is technically based in Sacramento.

Denham gave $1,000 to Ridenour on July 6, having represented California’s 10th congressional district before being defeated by current representative Josh Harder two years ago. Ridenour’s contributors have been roughly evenly split between individuals and businesses.

In contrast, Eggman has received heavy support from the Democratic Party, both on the state and county level. On Monday, for example, she received $50,000 each from the Fresno, Napa, and Tehama County Democratic Parties. She has also accumulated substantial amounts from the San Francisco, San Mateo, and San Diego county parties.

A variety of statewide PACs and nationwide companies have also donated to Eggman. Among the most recent were the California Women’s List, the California Apartment Association PAC, and Johnson & Johnson.