WASHINGTON -- Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley's federal PAC, which will become an important fundraising vehicle should he decide to run for president in 2016, is beginning to show signs of life.
In a report filed with the Federal Election Commission on Wednesday that covers the first half of 2013, the O' Say Can You See PAC reported raising $164,000, spending just over $143,000 and making a small number of political donations in the early presidential primary states of New Hampshire and Iowa for the first time.
Aides said O'Malley has also reported raising an additional $315,497 in so-called non-federal money. Those receipts were filed with the Internal Revenue Service on Wednesday but the report is not yet publicly available. That money can be spent on legislative and gubernatorial campaigns around the country -- but not on federal candidates.
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That puts the total haul for the PAC at nearly $480,000.
"Governor O'Malley's grateful for the support he's received and will work hard to elect candidates who share his vision of creating jobs and expanding opportunity," spokeswoman Lis Smith said in a statement.The vast majority of O'Malley's money reported to the FEC is still coming from Maryland, an indication he has not yet established a national fundraising operation -- and that's not a surprise given how uncertain the 2016 Democratic field remains. Details of the IRS-reported contributions are not yet available.
On the other side of the ledger, the PAC reported making a $2,500 contribution to Rep. Bruce Braley, the Iowa Democrat who announced this year he is running for Senate in 2014. The PAC also made a $2,500 contribution to former New Hampshire governor and now Senator Jeanne Shaheen as well as Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey, who won a special election this year to replace Secretary of State John Kerry.
O'Malley and Maryland Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski held a fundraiser for Shaheen in May.
If O'Malley continues to keep the door open to a 2016 run, the PAC will likely increase contributions to candidates in New Hampshire, Iowa and other early primary states as O'Malley establishes relationships there.
It was the first time the PAC has reported its activities since January.
The governor also remains heavily involved with raising money for the Democratic Governors Association, where he serves as fiance chair. The DGA raised $15 million over the past six months.
The report shows O'Malley's PAC is paying rent to the DGA.
O'Malley, who is term limited, has plans to travel to Pennsylvania, Ohio, New Jersey, New York, Florida, Massachusetts, Missouri, Kentucky and California to raise money for the DGA and individual candidates over the next several months.