Netroots Alliance


The "Use It Or Lose It" campaign urges constituents call their ultra-safe Democratic House Representatives and ask them to help fully fund all of our competitive challengers this cycle. Over fifty Republican-held seats are in play, and we need the funds to seriously challenge them all!

Take Action: "Use It Or Lose It" Action Page


"Use It Or Lose It" Archive

Minimum amount contributed so far: $2.33M

Please thank Democrats on our list who gave major contributions to the House this week
(Note: Most contributions are probably underestimated. In order to be added to the list, campaigns should email Chris Bowers at, detailing their post-9/30 donations to Democrats)
  • Anna Eshoo, $50K, CA-14, (650) 328-3700
  • Jim Costa, $50K, CA-20, (559) 252-2004
  • Howard Berman, $100K, CA-28, (818) 366-4293
  • Adam Schiff, $160K, CA-29, (626) 583-8581
  • Hilda Solis, $100K, CA-32, (202) 225-5464
  • Jane Harman, $50K, CA-36, (310) 328-9125
  • Grace Napolitano, $80K, CA-38, (202) 225-5256
  • Diana DeGette, $22.5K, CO-01, (303) 832-1925
  • John Lewis, $50K, GA-05, (202) 225-3801
  • John Olver, $50K, MA-01, (413) 259-9898
  • Barney Frank, $255K, MA-04, (617) 965-0119
  • Ed Markey, $100K, MA-07, (718) 395-3880
  • Michael Capuano, $50K, MA-08, (617) 497-6208
  • John Conyers, $100K, MI-14, (313) 438-2004
  • Rob Andrews, $100K, NJ-01, (856) 858-9810
  • Frank Pallone, $25K, NJ-06, (732) 571-4141
  • Jerry Nadler, $75K, NY-08, (212) 352-0370
  • Charlie Rangel, $100K, NY-15, (212) 862-4990
  • Dan Boren, $25K, OK-02, (918) 683-2401
  • Mike Doyle, $90K, PA-14, (202) 225-2135
  • Patrick Kennedy, $100K, RI-01, (401) 455-2006
  • Norm Dicks, $100K, WA-6, (202) 225-5916
And special thanks to...
  • John Kerry, $250,000, Contact
  • Ted Kennedy, $250,000, (617) 776-2595
Media Coverage of "Use It Or Lose It" Statements from Democratic Incumbents
  • DCCC chair Rahm Emmanuel:
    “Throughout the cycle, the remarkable grassroots movement for change has buoyed Democratic efforts to expand the playing field, support our candidates, and ultimately win a Democratic majority that can take our country in a new direction,” said Rahm Emanuel. “The recent unity shown between grassroots activists and Democratic Members to ensure that we can compete in dozens of newly competitive districts is heartening to the DCCC and all of our Democratic challengers.”
  • John Conyers. Excerpt:
    I want to applaud and for the Use It or Lose it campaign. We are on the brink of a historic election. We can't take anything for granted. We all need to do everything we can to maximize the chance of victory.

    By last August, I had fulfilled my required obligation (of $200,000 in dues) to the DCCC and then some. But I agree with Chris Bowers and others that, if ever there was an election that obligates every one of us to do more than what is routine, it is this one. Therefore, this week, I have donated an additional $100,000 directly to the DCCC and have given more than $14,000 to individual candidates.
  • Hilda Solis. Excerpt:
    "I pride myself on being a team player and working hard to help elect Democratic candidates throughout the country. In fact, I donated $50,000 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) after my first Congressional primary win in 2000 – even before I had cast my first vote in Congress. "Throughout the 2006 election cycle, I have contributed consistently to the DCCC and our Democratic candidates. "Since October 1st alone, I have contributed over $100,000 to our efforts to win back the House, bringing the total I have raised for, or contributed to, the DCCC or individual Democratic candidates this election cycle to over $1,088,555.
  • Barney Frank. Excerpt:
    I was able to increase my contributions in this way once it became clear after the September 19th Massachusetts primary election that I would be facing no opposition in the general election. And, because my fundraising has continued to be successful, I am able to do even more: this week I am contributing another $200,000, including $24,000 for Red to Blue candidates and $176,000 for the DCCC.

    The additional $255,000 this month increases the total I have raised for, or contributed to, the DCCC or individual Democratic candidates, from over $1.1 million to more than $1.4 million.
  • Grace Napolitano (no link):
    Rep. Napolitano would like to thank her constituents who have placed calls on behalf of the Use It Or Lose It initiative. They reaffirmed her effort to contribute more to Democratic congressional candidates. She will continue to pay close attention to more congressional races so that she may be able to contribute more funds prior to Election Day.
  • Earl Blumenauer. Excerpt:
    I deeply appreciate the "Use It or Lose It" project spotlighting the fact that there is over $50 million available for competititive House Democrats sitting unused in congressional campaign accounts. One of my assignments for the Democratic caucus has been to encourage Democratic House members to not just sit on money, but step up and use it.
  • Diana DeGette:
    There has been an ongoing discussion over the past week concerning financial support for Democratic efforts from candidates without major party opposition. Diana DeGette has been working hard to ensure a Democratic majority on Nov. 8, and I wanted to share what she is doing with you.

    Representative DeGette has been traveling from one end of the country to the other and throughout Colorado campaigning for Democratic candidates. In the past ten days alone she has campaigned for Tammy Duckworth and Phil Hare in Illinois, Bruce Braley in Iowa, Patty Wetterling in Minnesota, Harry Mitchell in Arizona, Darlene Hooley in Oregon, and Darcy Burner in Washington.

    Rep. DeGette has donated more than $340,000 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and individual Democratic candidates, and raised an additional $290,000 for those candidates and the DCCC. This past week alone she donated another $22,500 directly to Democratic campaigns and raised an additional $58,000 for candidates. She will continue to campaign and raise money for Democratic candidates until the last vote is cast. In twelve days Democrats have a real chance to take our country back from the radical Republican right and Representative DeGette will do everything she can to make that happen.
  • Michael Capuano (no link):
    Congressman Capuano has donated $200,000 to the DCCC this cycle, $50,000 of which was donated on October 25. He has also donated $71,800 to other Democratic candidates all across the country, $47,000 of which has been sent out since October 1. Additionally, he has donated $25,000 to the Massachusetts Democratic Party to elect a Democratic governor. He is doing what he can to help Democrats win and will continue to do so. The Democrats have an extraordinary opportunity this year and now is the time for everyone to chip in.
  • Kennedy and Kerry (Excerpt):
    Kerry and Senator Edward M. Kennedy both said they were giving $500,000 each to national Democratic committees, while Representative Edward Markey of Malden said he was giving $100,000 and Representative Michael Capuano of Somerville said he was giving $50,000.

    But Representative Martin Meehan of Lowell, who has more cash on hand than any other member of the US House -- $4.9 million -- is abiding by his decision not to give any more cash directly from his campaign to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, according to spokesman Sandra Salstrom.
Background facts:
  • Last Friday, October 20,’s Chris Bowers blogged about this campaign--encouraging readers to call 70 safe House Democrats to ask them to pony up. His blogging continued through today (full archive).
  • Last Friday, October 20, Political Action sent emails to their members in those 70 safe Districts—also encouraging calls. The email said “We need to send a clear signal to safe House Democrats: Keeping 100% of excess funds gets them nothing if Democrats have 0% of power in Washington . Plus, as ordinary Americans go above and beyond the call of duty to help win back Congress, we need our Democratic politicians in the trenches with us.” These emails continued for the next week.
  • On Monday, October 23, Rep. Barney Frank became the first to announce his commitment--$250,000, over 30% of his cash on hand as of September 30.
  • By Tuesday, October 24, this campaign had been covered by the New York Times, Washington Post online, Boston Globe, Air America, and CNN’s Situation Room. Later in the week, it was covered by CNN online, the Lowell Sun, and NPR.
  • By Wednesday, Rep. Marty Meehan became the clear poster child for safe House Democrats who sit on their financial stockpiles instead of helping the cause. He has $4.9 million in the bank – more than anyone else. Like many who gave this week, Meehan gave the DCCC his required dues earlier this year, but he refuses to chip in more to help win newly-competitive House races that were never expected to need funding. This week, the New York Times and Boston Globe described his constituents’ anger, and his hometown Lowell Sun quoted the father of an American soldier in Iraq who will blame Meehan if Democrats fall short of winning a strong majority in Congress.
  • On Thursday, four of Meehan’s colleagues on the Massachusetts delegation committed extra funds to the cause. Senators Kennedy and Kerry each gave $500,000 (split between the DSCC and DCCC), Rep. Ed Markey gave $100,000, and Rep. Michael Capuano gave $50,000.
  • By Friday, over 20 safe congressional Democrats had chipped in over $2.3 million to help secure a strong Democratic majority. and Political action asked their constituents to thank them.