U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz has nearly twice the amount of campaign cash as his colleague from Hawaii, Sen. Mazie Hirono.

And yet, Schatz’s name won’t be on the ballot again until 2022, while Hirono’s first six-year term is up next year.

Still, Hirono managed to raise almost $400,000 during the April-June period, boosting her to $1.27 million in cash on hand.

Sen. Mazie Hirono speaking at a town hall in May. She has picked up her campaign fundraising pace in advance of her 2018 re-election campaign. Anthony Quintano/Civil Beat

She also spent $115,000 during the second quarter, the lion’s share going to three mainland businesses for consulting, fundraising advice and online strategies.

Hirono, a Democrat, has not yet drawn an announced challenger. She steamrolled over Democrat Ed Case and Republican Linda Lingle in her first Senate run in 2012.

But Hirono also raised $5.5 million and spent even more in that campaign, leaving her with $240,000 in debt.

The senator’s recent filing with the Federal Election Commission shows that she still has an outstanding debt of $125,000, some of which dates to her U.S. House campaigns in 2006 and 2008.

Senator Brian Schatz in Washington DC office4. 19 jan 2017
Sen. Brian Schatz is not up for re-election until 2022, but he’s sitting on a big pile of campaign donations. Cory Lum/Civil Beat

By contrast, Schatz — who never served in the House and was appointed to the Senate in 2012 — has no campaign debt and $2.4 million in cash on hand. He raised $225,000 in the second quarter and spent just $74,000, much of it for fundraising and digital consulting.

Schatz cruised to re-election last year but faced a very competitive Democratic primary in 2014 against U.S. Rep. Colleen Hanabusa. He raised $6.1 million that year and spent $5.1 million.

Hirono’s money is roughly divided between individual contributions and political action committees.

Major PACs include the Women’s Political Committee of Los Angeles ($10,000), America Works ($10,000), Google ($9,000), Microsoft ($6,000) and Verizon ($6,000).

Hirono also received $45,631 during the current election cycle from EMILY’s List. OpenSecrets.org reports that the pro-abortion rights organization has been her top PAC contributor from 2006 to 2016, directing a quarter-million dollars her way.

Hirono has undergone two cancer surgeries this year, but has vowed to seek another term. Schatz, Hanabusa and U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard have all endorsed her.

On June 29, U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard sent an email to her supporters asking them to help Hirono. 

Schatz received twice as much money from individuals as he did from PACs.

That includes $5,400 each from three executives with Navatek of Honolulu. Top PACs are Covanta Energy ($7,000) and the American Federation of Government Employees ($5,000).

OpenSecrets.org says Schatz’s top PACs through 2016 have been the League of Conservation Voters ($193,797) and J Street PAC ($110,580), the former an environmental group and the latter a pro-Israel organization.

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