4:36 pm Oct. 26, 2012
Hakeem Jeffries isn't a congressman yet, but he's already making lots of friends in Washington.
The Brooklyn assemblyman has raised more than $1.3 million for his congressional race to date, but he's not holding on to much it for future challenges.
With just over a week until Election Day, when he's expected to win handily in an overwhelmingly Democratic district, Jeffries has spent his cash on hand down to just $55,000, according to his most recent filing this week with the Federal Election Commission.
After his primary win in late June, Jeffries was enlisted for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's "Majority Makers" program, and a sizable chunk of his discretionary money has gone to the committee, and to the candidates it's currently promoting.
Jeffries has given a total of $85,000 to the DCCC itself since July 1, and has spread other donations to campaign committees around the country. He gave $2,000 each to John Ocuguera, a House candidate in Nevada; to Cheri Bustos in Illinois; and to Scott Peters in California. And $1,000 to Alan Lowenthal in California, and Elizabeth Esty, in Connecticut.
He's also been generous to some New Yorkers who might be colleagues in the future, with donations to Grace Meng in Queens, Mark Murphy on Staten Island, Kathy Hochul in Western New York, and Julian Schreibman and Bill Owens upstate.
Jeffries even took care of some hometown Brooklyn candidates who had supported his candidacy, right down to local district leaders Robert Cornegy and Earl Williams, along with Assemblyman Rafael Espinal and State Senator Martin Dilan, all of whom got $500 each.
Jeffries' candidacy became something of a cause for school reformers when it was first announced, and later, for pro-Israel groups, when it looked like his chief opponent, Charles Barron, an outspoken critic of Israel, was getting some traction in the race.
Candidates around the country might expect some more largesse from Jeffries in the run-up to Election Day; a spokesperson said he has a fund-raising event tonight in Manhattan.