House Speaker Nancy Pelosi funneled $14,000 to Rep. Ilhan Omar’s campaign in late July as the Minnesota Democrat struggled with a well-funded primary challenge.
Federal Election Commission records released Thursday show that Nancy Pelosi transferred $10,000 from her PAC and an additional $4,000 from her campaign committee to Rep. Omar on July 22, one week after Pelosi endorsed Rep. Omar in her reelection bid.
The Minnesota Democrat is facing an expensive primary battle against attorney Antone Melton-Meaux, who outraised Rep. Omar significantly in the second quarter of 2020.
Melton-Meaux raked in $3.3 million between April and June to Omar’s $470,000. Included in the challenger’s donor list is Democratic Colorado governor Jared Polis, who gave $1,000 to Melton-Meaux’s campaign on July 27, as the Free Beacon reported.
The fundraising haul allowed Melton-Meaux to spend more than $1.7 million over the first 3 quarters of July. Meanwhile, Rep. Omar spent just $784,000.
More than $600,000 – 77% of those disbursements – went to a D.C.-based consulting firm run by Rep. Omar’s new husband.
Following his spending spree, Melton-Meaux holds $695,000 on hand, down from the $2 million he held at the end of the second quarter. Omar holds $732,000 on hand.
Rep. Omar did not respond to a request for comment.
The late push from Nancy Pelosi suggests genuine concern for Ilhan Omar, who has butted heads with the California Democrat in the past. Pelosi criticized her for using “deeply offensive” anti-Semitic tropes in February 2019 and condemned the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel, which Omar supports, a month later. Omar quickly hit back, saying, “a condemnation for people that want to exercise their First Amendment rights is beneath any leader.” Melton-Meaux has campaigned against Omar’s support for BDS.
While both Rep. Omar and Melton-Meaux have earned a number of prominent local endorsements, Melton-Meaux has outraised Omar within Minnesota’s Fifth Congressional District. The Democratic challenger raised $273,000 from the district’s constituents in the second quarter, while Omar raised just $8,000.
Nancy Pelosi and Melton-Meaux also didn’t respond to a request for comment.