Guthrie Adds $1.2 Million to Campaign Fund

Exciting news out of Washington State today!

Bruce Guthrie, the LP’s candidate for U.S. Senate against Maria Cantwell, has decided to donate the bulk of his life savings to his own campaign. Suddenly this race is one of the top 2 or 3 third party contests to watch this year.

The campaign’s official press release follows…

Bruce Guthrie, the Libertarian candidate for U.S. Senate, is lending his campaign $1.18 million. In a closely watched race that has focused heavily on the Democratic and Republican candidates, this move is certain to change the dynamic significantly.

Guthrie explains that his decision to make the loan came after months on the campaign trail. “I’m disappointed, as most people are, that money is what drives politics in this country,” he said. “But I realize if I didn’t go in all the way, if I didn’t do the best job with the campaign I thought I could do, I would have regretted it later.

“My heart is really in this race, and I decided it was just time to put my money where my heart is.”

Guthrie raised the money by mortgaging his home and using his life savings. “It is absolutely everything I could scrape together,” he said. “I mortgaged my house, my only house, in Bellingham . And I put up all the savings that my former wife and I were able to save in our 17 years of marriage.”

As required by the Federal Election Commission, Guthrie sent written notice of his personal spending plans to his opponents on Saturday. Under the FEC’s Millionaires’ Amendment, which is triggered by the self-financing, the contribution limits for the other candidates may increase.

Bruce Guthrie is a former instructor at Western Washington University , having earned his Masters Degree from the highly respected J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management. When he’s not enjoying Washington ’s great outdoors he is an avid speed skater, sharing his passion for the sport by coaching for the Whatcom Speed Skating Club and Special Olympics.

Details about the Bruce Guthrie’s campaign can be found online at

If Guthrie makes a big splash into the high single digits or low-double digits, it seems like he could be given credit for helping to shape the balance of the Senate. I’m not sure if he pulls more from Cantwell or her GOP challenger, but either way the press will probably pick up on it in a big way if he captures an amount much greater than the margin of victory.

And I’ll even go a step further and suggest that if Guthrie does perform exceptionally well in this race, he should be considered for a spot on the national ticket in 2008.

30 Responses to “Guthrie Adds $1.2 Million to Campaign Fund”

  1. NewFederalist Says:

    Commendable perhaps but stupid. Why would a sane person throw away his financial security on a hopeless race?

  2. Nigel Watt Says:

    Maybe (hopefully) he knows something we don’t.

  3. David Aitken Says:

    Jeeze. Another example of politics making people stupid. I met him at the LP convention and he seemed like he had his head on straight. But this? Reality, unfortunately, will set in on November 7. Even with the money, I don’t like the odds. Guess we’ll see if it works. Do you really want someone with this kind of judgement at the top of the ticket?

  4. Doug Craig Says:

    Hey guys let see if if he actually spends that much.One of the things he just did was take away the ability of the press to say he is not a real candidate.He can just have the money in the bank and it will make a differnce. If he spends it I hope he spends it on TV ads.Also with this kind of money maybe it will help bring in some volunteers to help.Does anyone know how he is polling.

  5. Brian Says:

    too bad it’s a senate race and not a house race.

  6. Charles Says:

    Yeah, Doug is right. This late in the election, and considering the guy’s history I’d be surprised if he spent more then 200,000(which still is an absurdly high amount for an lp non-national candidate), this is a just a brilliant move to get some attention in the media.

  7. Austin Cassidy Says:

    That’s entirely possible… add $1.2 million, spend a quarter of it and refund the remainder at the end of the election. Still, it makes for an excellent story… and he’s run a pretty good campaign so far.

    The story is on the front page of the Seattle Time’s website right now… in the “Election 2006” box.

  8. Jackcjackson Says:

    The article says “’loan” not “donate”

  9. Joey Dauben Says:

    I wonder if he’ll buy yard signs.

  10. George Whitfield Says:

    I admire Bruce for his dedication and commitment. I think that he is the best judge of what his personal funds should be spent for. I just sent him another contribution because he has heart. Go Guthrie!

  11. Stuart Richards Says:

    For that kind of cash, he might well be able to win, although he probably should have done this earlier if he was gonna do it.

    TV ads all the way with that shit, though. Go all Ross Perot on their asses; with enough TV ads nobody can ignore you.

  12. Phil Says:

    Guthrie has had yard signs around the state for several weeks now. The WA LP is a “liberal-focus” LP party - Guthrie is running anti-Iraq entirely, and the Green is foolishly running as anti-marijuana. He’ll be taking votes away from Cantwell.

  13. Joey Dauben Says:

    The million bucks won’t buy a U.S. Senate race in Vermont, let alone Washington state. The gubernatorial candidates in Texas are spending a million a week just on TV ads.

    But TV is definitely the route to go, but also keep in mind that the timing for this is perfect. People make up their minds on who to vote for more towards election day instead of the first week after Labor Day; at least that’s the stuff I’ve read…

    So after the race is over …where does Guthrie live? That’s what I wanna know…

  14. Phil Says:

    Guthrie lives in WA-2… He ran for Congress in 2002 and 2004 getting 2% both times.

  15. Mike Gillis Says:

    The Green, Aaron Dixon, isn’t running primarily on drug issues. He’s running on the war in Iraq as his big issue as well.

  16. scott Says:

    Bruce has broken many records with this campaign far before he chose to add this sum to his campaign.

    He has had an office, a staff, yard signs, bumper stickers, volunteers, a groundswell of support, and he raised more money in one day than any other Washington State Libertarian candidate in history.

    This was, again, all before he put the rest of his money into the pot.

    In case some of you forgot, or did not know, the Libertarian party both nationally and locally turned its focus from gathering purist members to training campaigns to raise money, to be organized, etc.

    So Bruce made a huge step and became the largest funded Libertarian campaign in America so far this election. Keeping in stride with this new approach of running for office. It is quite easy to point at the date and suspect why now, why ever, and what will he really do.

    All I can say is please stop debating the value of his intentions and, if you support this campaign at all, come to his office and help with putting out yard signs, bumper stickers, and whatever else your arms can carry.

    The real question here is what will you do with your money and your energy.


  17. Phil Says:

    Dixon’s primary focus for most of the campaign has been on drugs - only recently has he realized that running on the Iraq War would be a good way to win votes.

  18. Mike Gillis Says:


    You’re wrong. I serve as Dixon’s press secretary and have been on his campaign from the beginning and we’ve talked about the war on drugs, but not nearly as much as the Iraq War, which has been the centerpiece of the campaign from the beginning.

    Since Aaron announced in April, ending the war has always been our primary issue and the press has recognized that when they’ve covered us.

    If you think otherwise, you’re mistaken.

  19. Phil Says:

    I suspected you were from his campaign… and I’ll concede that you would know better than me. But from what I’ve heard about the campaign, the focus has been on drugs.

  20. Mike Gillis Says:


    You probably saw Aaron speak at Hempfest, where that was the number one issue. I know that he and Aaron crossed paths there.

    But since Aaron announced, it’s always been about the war. Our press conference where he announced his candidacy had a counter in the background tallying the cost of the Iraq War.

    To be honest, we’ve hardly focused on the war on drugs at all. It’s an important issue, but the war is THE issue in the race and only Dixon and Guthrie seem to be taking a clear position on it.

    I wish Bruce the best… I’ve met a couple times and have been very impressed with him. I have some differences of opinion with him, but he’s very personable, principled and articulate and I think he’s a terrific candidate for the Libertarians.

  21. Phil Says:

    Oh, I don’t have anything to do with the Guthrie campaign… I was just remarking at what I’d seen in the media and on the internet.

  22. NewFederalist Says:

    Well, I kick started this discussion and I have learned a lot. Perhaps I will do a little checking before I assume anything! My apologies to Bruce Guthrie. Seems like he knows what he is doing.

  23. mark Says:

    Good points Scott! Typical of being the famous debate club libertarians, when a candidate actually does something good, it gets second guessed and scrutinized! To all of you “debaters” out there, go to the website and donate-do something real for a change!

  24. Ruth in Florida Says:

    I was so excited by Bruce’s commitment that I went to his website, liked what I saw and sent him a hundred bucks! I urge everyone else reading this to go to, and if you like (even some!) of what you see, send a contribution.

    This has turned into an exciting race and I want to be a part of it! How about you? Bruce stepped up, will you?

  25. Gary Odom Says:

    “A fool and his money are soon parted.” Oh well, best of luck, anyway, to anyone running against the “Two-Headed Dragon.”

    Isn’t it interesting, by the way, that a candidate who mortgages his own home and savings has to comply with a bunch of red tape under the “Millionares amendment” while “the best politicians money can buy” simply sell their office to special interests to fund their campaigns- “the old-fashioned” way.

  26. Joey Dauben Says:

    Guthrie just pulled in to Wash. State what Badnarik did for all 50 states in 2004, is that not correct?

    Just imagine 50 millionaire independents/third partyers spending $1 mil each on their statewide campaigns. That’d be credibility.

    But then you get to guys like me, who maybe perhaps like how everything looks on a candidate, but when they start campaigning at gay pride events or start mentioning ending the drug war…then yeah, ya lost me.

  27. Doug Craig Says:

    Joey why do candidates lose you when it come to the war on drugs or gay pride.Does those people not deserve freedom.

  28. undercover_anarchist Says:

    Of course not. Dauben’s favorite book is that ancient hate text the Torah, which prescribed death by stoning to assfuckers. And the lost 11th commandment, obscured by the liberal media, was “Thou shalt not inhale!” You’re going to hell, Mr. Craig!

  29. George Phillies Says:

    The Seattle newspapers have reported on Mr. Guthrie’s actual net worth. He also has less liquid assets that are considerably larger than this, so he is not throwing away financial security (ignoring, of course, taht when you are in your 40s you can always get a job.)

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