Rivals for the ranking member slot, Eshoo and Pallone chatted earlier this month at a news conference. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
Rep. Anna G. Eshoo’s leadership political action committee raised $203,000 — mostly from high-tech and telecommunication firms — as she bids to be ranking member of the Energy and Commerce Committee. It is the first leadership PAC of the California Democrat’s nearly 22-year congressional career. First-quarter numbers for Eshoo’s main rival for the post, Rep. Frank Pallone Jr., D-N.J., were not yet available.
The burgeoning war chest provides leverage for Eshoo in the closely-contested ranking member race to succeed retiring Rep. Henry A. Waxman, D-Calif., when the new Congress convenes.
Eshoo’s PAC was bolstered by contributions from the PACs of some powerful industry players who could come before the Energy and Commerce Committee, including Time Warner Cable, Comcast and NBC Universal, Google and Microsoft.
Leadership PACS are not just about receiving money, but about being able to spend cash, too, specifically in support of colleagues whose relationships could be professionally beneficial.
In her quarterly report, Eshoo revealed that she made donations to a number of her colleagues, including many in the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s Frontline program for vulnerable members. Members who received donations from Eshoo’s PAC include Rep. Nick J. Rahall II of West Virginia, John F. Tierney of Massachusetts, Raul Ruiz of California, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Ami Bera of California.