Jack Evans’ challengers poised to receive thousands in matching public campaign funds

Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans’ challengers will likely secure hundreds of thousands of dollars through participation in D.C.’s public campaign financing program, according to financial documents.

Four out of the five candidates vying to represent Ward 2 on the D.C. Council have filed their first campaign contributions reports with D.C.’s Office of Campaign Finance, which reveal that the candidates have raised tens of thousands of dollars in the first few months of fundraising. The contenders will likely receive thousands of dollars more through D.C.’s 5-to-1 match for small-dollar donations from D.C. residents under the Fair Elections Program.

The program also extends startup funds to campaigns that adhere to certain requirements, like accepting a $50 limit for individual contributions and refusing donations from political action committees. All five candidates have pledged to participate in the program.

Former Barack Obama staffer Jordan Grossman raised more than $37,600, the highest among the four candidates who filed reports. Grossman received the most contributions from District residents – about $18,100 – and almost $10,200 from his immediate family, according to his campaign’s report.

Foggy Bottom and West End Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner Patrick Kennedy, who raised a total of $12,300, was the only other candidate who reported contributions from himself or immediate family. Kennedy personally contributed about $1,300, and his immediate family gave $200, according to his report.

Kennedy also received the maximum allowable donation from four of his fellow ANC 2A commissioners: rising senior James Harnett, Detrick Campbell, Nicole Goldin and Trupti Patel. All four have endorsed Kennedy in the race.

ANC 2E Commissioner Kishan Putta, the most recent challenger to announce his candidacy, raised about $12,900, while ANC 2F Commissioner John Fanning raised about $6,200, according to their campaign contributions reports.

Daniel Hernandez, a Microsoft employee and former Marine who announced his campaign in June, has not yet filed his financial report, which was due July 31. His campaign has received a filing extension until August 12, Hernandez said.

“I was traveling for work out of town last week and wanted to avoid the possibility of any issues while I was gone,” he said.

Evans, the incumbent Ward 2 representative, has not filed paperwork to run for re-election amid ethics investigations into business deals he made while serving as a councilmember.

Evans resigned as Metro Board chair in June after a probe found he violated the transit agency’s ethics code, and the D.C. Council later voted to remove Evans as finance committee chair and open their own investigation into his activities. Federal agents searched Evans’ home and confiscated electronic devices and documents earlier this summer related to a separate federal investigation.

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