Track the money flowing into the race for L.A. mayoral race


The money flowing into the Los Angeles mayoral race has topped $100 million, with businessman Rick Caruso’s spending at nearly eight times that of Rep. Karen Bass and her supporters.

$12.5 million
spent supporting Karen Bass
$92.3 million
spent supporting Rick Caruso

Who has raised the most?

Caruso has, by far. Since announcing his candidacy in February, the billionaire has poured more than $85 million of his own money into his campaign, or about $320,000 a day. Caruso came in 7 percentage points behind Bass in the primaries. Recent polls show he is still trailing.

Bass began receiving contributions more than a year before Caruso’s announcement, campaign filings show. Her fundraising efforts ramped up after the June primary, in which she received 43% of the votes. Recent filings show she has raised more money in the last five months or so since the primaries.

Where is the money coming from?

More than 99% of Caruso's funds came from himself in the form of loans. Caruso has raised just over $1 million in contributions, with an average of $370 per contribution. Candidate committees for the race have contribution limits of $3,000 – and just a handful of his supporters have donated the maximum amount. Some of his large donors include Bob Tuttle, former U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom and businessman specializing in car dealerships, and Maria Hummer-Tuttle, attorney and president of The Hummer Tuttle Foundation.

Bass has been running her campaign mostly on contributions. Nearly every ZIP Code in Los Angeles has donated to her $6-million total, Times analysis found. Since the beginning of her campaign, Bass has received more than 12,000 contributions, with each averaging $500.

The congresswoman’s fundraising has paid off. The campaign has qualified for the city’s matching funds program, where the city pays the campaign $6 for every matchable dollar of a qualified contribution. The campaign has qualified for maximum matching funds at $2.2 million, making the city of Los Angeles her campaign’s largest single contributor.

Funds by type
Contributions Loans Matching funds

Many outside committees have participated in Bass’ run for mayor. While these committees cannot communicate with a candidate, they are allowed to spend money to support or oppose one. A committee supporting Bass – Communities United for Bass for LA Mayor 2022 – has raised more than $5 million this election cycle.

Notable donors include Jeffrey Katzenberg, the venture capitalist and Dreamworks co-founder who donated nearly $2 million to the primarily formed committee. Service Employees International Union and those affiliated with the union also have donated nearly $1 million to the candidate and primarily formed committees.

How is the money being spent?

Candidate committee spending
Rick Caruso
$92.3 million spent of $87.6 million candidate committee funds

Much of Caruso’s total has gone toward advertising and campaign strategy. The campaign has spent nearly $30 million across five local TV stations (KABC-TV, KCBS-TV, KNBC-TV, KTLA-TV, KTTV-TV). More than $9 million was spent on digital advertising, with Google getting $2.7 million. The campaign also spent $13 million on canvassing. Campaign strategy firms such as Bearstar and Aisle 518 have also provided services to the campaign.

Karen Bass
$8.1 million spent of $9.1 million candidate committee funds

Bass has spent on campaign consultants, advertising and campaign workers. Her campaign has spent more than $1.3 million on TV advertising on many of the same stations used by Caruso.

Outside spending

Outside spending has largely benefited Bass – with more than $4 million spent in her support. Many labor groups such as the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union have spent money on advertising and email blasts. Her largest primarily formed committee – Communities United for Bass – has spent $3.6 million on various advertising campaigns against Caruso.