Exposés, reports
and analysis.

Outrages & Insights

Muckraking blog
by Jim Heaney


Environmental blog
by Dan Telvock

Tom Toles

Editorial cartoons
and commentary

Money In Politics:

How Chris Jacobs financed his campaign

Published March 28, 2021

Chris Jacobs was elected to Congress in June 2020 when he defeated Democrat Nate McMurray. He had previously served as a member of the Buffalo School Board, Erie County Clerk and State Senator. Jacobs ran in three races for Congress last year, a Republican primary and special election for the NY27 seat in June, and then in the general election in November. He raised a total of $1,587,616 to fund those campaigns. As of January 31, 2021 his campaign treasury totaled $62,829. Ken Kruly, Investigative Post researcher and publisher of Politics and Other Stuff, reviewed his campaign finances for those elections.

How Jacobs financed his Congressional campaigns

Personal Loan to Campaign $ 561,000
Political Action Committees Identification Amount
Majority Committee PAC Kevin McCarthy $ 40,000
Engineers Political Education Committee Operating Engineers Union $ 20,000
The Eye of the Tiger PAC Steve Scalise $ 10,000
National Fuel Gas Company Federal PAC Natural gas $ 10,000
Blue Cross Blue Shield Association PAC Health insurance $ 7,500
Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers PAC Insurance $ 7,500
Individuals Identification Amount
Lawrence D. Jacobs Jr. Physician $ 11,200
Duane Paddock Jr. Paddock Chevrolet $ 8,400
David McElroy AIG Insurance $ 8,400
Luke Jacobs Attorney $ 8,400
Brian Lipke Self-Employed $ 6,300
57 Individual donors Each contributing $ 5,600


Talking Points

  • Jacobs loaned his committee $561,000, or about one-third of what he spent. The debt remained unpaid as of January.  
  • Members of the Jacobs family contributed $89,600.
  • Jacobs received a total of 1,322 donations.
  • A total of 140 donations were received from political action committees (PACs). Donations from these PACs amounted to $316,600.
  • Majority Committee PAC, which is affiliated with House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, gave Jacobs $40,000 over the entire election cycle. House Minority Whip Steve Scalise’s Eye of the Tiger PAC donated $10,000.
  • 1,137 contributions came from individuals, other campaign committees and various other organizations. 1,076 contributions came from individuals, with an average contribution of $1,221.  74 individuals gave $5,000 or more over the two-year period.
  • The largest recipient of Jacobs’ campaign funds in 2019-2020 was a Virginia firm, Strategic Media Services, which was paid $1,058,149.  Another Virginia firm, The Tarrance Group, was paid $66,358 for surveys.


Ken Kruly and Geoff Kelly discuss the money Chris Jacobs raised and spent to win his seat in Congress — and how new Census numbers and redistricting might affect his political future.

Listen to Podcast

Next: The largest local donors to Gov. Andrew Cuomo.