Jack McDonald, the ceo of the Austin-based company Perficient, has raised $308,655 in the five weeks since he announced his exploratory committee, the Statesman reports.
This is clearly an impressive start and is probably going to make any other Democrats who were considering jumping in this race think twice. Perhaps the report may even inch incumbent Mike McCaul towards a bid for Attorney General.
District 10 encompasses two media markets and is among the most expensive districts in the state. Larry Joe Doherty raised over $1 million last year and still lost by double digits. We are going to need a lot of money (and a great candidate, of course) to have a good shot at winning this district. It is early, but I think McDonald has the potential to provide both.
When we have discussed this race in the past, several people (including myself) expressed concern about several Republican contributions in McDonald's past. The controversy centered primarily on contributions to George W. Bush in 2000 and to Ben Bentzin in 2005.
I would guess his contribution history will come up again in the next few months. The contributions to Bush and Bentzin are very dissappointing, but we should also remember that he has given tens of thousands to Democrats and Democratic groups, in Travis County, Texas, and across the nation. 98 percent of his political contributions have been to Democrats.
Putting that aside, it is clear from the early fundraising totals that this will be a race to watch in 2010. Let's hope the DCCC is paying attention, too.