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The Journal Gazette

Wednesday, June 20, 2018 3:50 pm

Tritch leads Hoosier congressional candidates in share of in-district donations

BRIAN FRANCISCO | The Journal Gazette

Democrat Courtney Tritch has raised 92 percent of her itemized individual campaign contributions from residents of northeast Indiana's 3rd Congressional District – the highest share of in-district donations for any Hoosier running for a U.S. House seat and the fifth-highest rate in the nation.

The lawmaker whom Tritch seeks to replace, first-term Republican Rep. Jim Banks, has the fourth-highest rate – 69 percent – among the 21 Indiana congressional candidates in the November general election, according to data compiled by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics

The lowest share of in-district contributions in the state is 11 percent for Republican Greg Pence in the east-central and southeastern 6th District. Pence is the brother of Vice President Mike Pence.

The Center for Responsive Politics says the average in-district contribution rate for all general-election congressional candidates is 33 percent. The center tracks itemized individual donations, which are contributions of $200 or more. Its findings are based on Federal Election Commission data for the 2017-18 election cycle.

"Whether raising money closer to home indicates a stronger connection to one's constituents is an open question, but the longer a lawmaker is in office, the more likely she is to raise a substantial percentage of campaign funds from outside her district," the center states on its website, www.opensecrets.org.

The center's data show Tritch and Banks had raised about the same amount of itemized individual donations through April 18: $232,253 for her and $229,771 for him.

In northern Indiana's 2nd District, which includes parts of Kosciusko County, third-term Republican Rep. Jackie Walorski had raised more than $653,000 in individual contributions, 65 percent of it from the district. Democratic challenger Mel Hall had collected nearly $384,000, with 55 percent of the money from district residents.