WHO GOT IT?
Steven Cody Reynolds, a Democratic candidate for Congress in Oregon’s 6th Congressional District.
WHO GAVE IT?
Reynolds. He announced last week that he’d loaned his campaign the money. It showed up in December, according to his filings with the Federal Election Commission, but hasn’t been previously reported. (He also reported spending $42,000 so far, nearly all of it on billboards.)
WHY DOES IT MATTER?
Oregon gained a sixth congressional seat as a result of the 2020 census. Although the opening has drawn a lot of interest, there is no clear front-runner. Other Democrats in the race include former Multnomah County Commissioner Loretta Smith; state Rep. Andrea Salinas (D-Lake Oswego); Dr. Kathleen Harder, a Salem physician; and Matt West, an Intel engineer and first-time candidate who has loaned his campaign $437,000. Also considering the race: state Rep. Teresa Alonso Leon (D-Woodburn) and former Rep. Brian Clem (D-Salem). If Reynolds’ loan is legit, it could be enough to make him a contender.
WHAT DOES REYNOLDS SAY?
Reynolds moved to Oregon at 18 and later graduated from West Point. He ran for federal office in Oregon four times between 2012 and 2018.
He says, after failing to make a dent in previous elections, he set out to accumulate enough wealth to self-fund his next campaign and did so through early and timely investments in cryptocurrencies. He’s changed his minor-party affiliation to Democrat and pledges to spend enough to reach every voter in his district. “Before, I naively thought I could do that with ideas and passion,” Reynolds says, “but the political system is no longer a marketplace of ideas. It’s also about reach and money.”