Tom Ganley’s campaign finance reports show that he decided to repay $2.5 in the outstanding loans he made to the campaign, leaving his campaign with only $100k on hand and $1 million in debt (to himself.)

The campaign is pushing the Cleveland Plain Dealer that this is not a sign of Ganley pulling up stakes right before the election, but I’m not persuaded:

“He tends to make big loans to his campaign at or near the end of a financial reporting period, which has had the effect of making his campaign look flush at the moment the political world is watching

“But with his third report of the campaign filed today, covering the quarter that ended Sept. 30, it’s possible to look back and see a pattern: Ganley provides the cash at just the right time, only to repay himself almost right away when the new quarter starts. The way to spot this is to go back through the previous reports, which we just did when we noticed that so little of Ganley’s cash was actually in his campaign.”

"The reason that Tom takes the money out and puts it back in is, he keeps it in an interest-bearing account," his campaign spokeswoman, Meghan Snyder, says. "That’s Tom’s business sense and inherent idea of how to make money work."

And, it’s true that Ganley has had a pattern of making big loans right before the campaign finance deadline, and then repaying most of it shortly into the next period.  But this report defies that pattern.  Here, we have Ganley repaying as much of the loan as he can, but then no new loan before the beginning of the next reporting period.  Ganley intentionally let his campaign report virtually no money this time.

The $2.5 million Ganley repaid was repaid in early July.  He went on to spend nearly a million of the money he left in the campaign.  But a good chunk of that went into political donations to other campaigns:

Batchelder for State Representative

Kasich for Governor

Ohio House Republican Organizational Co


The Republican Senate Campaign Committe

These are rather odd donations for Ganley to be making in a campaign that is $1 million in debt and is not exactly sprinting to the finish line in first.

Ganley’s campaign manager attempts to lead the Plain Dealer to believe that despite the fact that Ganley made no loan to his campaign from July until the end of September, he might still make one more loan before the end of the campaign:

Ganley has another option. He could write another check or two to his campaign when or if he sees fit. Will he?

"We’ll see what happens in the next three weeks," Snyder said.

We don’t need to wait.  Ganley’s report shows that his campaign has had multiple polls done, including an in-kind poll done by the NRCC at the end of September.  The NRCC has not put any money into Ganley’s race since then.  The DCCC has pulled out of the race concluding that Sutton is poised to win.  And Tom Ganley’s campaign cut back on it’s advertising budget for the final weeks of the campaign, cancelling a major television buy it had reserved.

Do you really think the campaign would have done that if it believed the candidate might cut it another big multi-million dollar check?  Me, neither.