Three Republican candidates — Meg Whitman, Rick Scott, and Linda McMahon — have collectively spent $243 million dollars of their own money on their campaigns. Yes, almost a quarter of a billion dollars. That’s more than the combined spending during this election of the US Chamber of Commerce, Karl Rove’s American Crossroads, and major union the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.
But what’s ironic is that none of these candidates are ahead in the polls. Whitman’s $141 million (and that doesn’t include contributions) got her 8 points behind Jerry Brown for the California governorship, while former World Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon has spent $41 million — more than twice as much per voter as Whitman — but is trailing by 18 points in her run for Connecticut Senator. Only Scott — a former health care executive at a hospital chain that paid $1.7 billion in fines for Medicare fraud — is competitive in his bid to be the governor of Florida, after spending $60 million of his own money.