PASADENA -- The $10 million-plus raised in the most expensive House race ever let the candidates jam mailboxes with glossy fliers, but the big bucks apparently did not make much of a difference at the ballot box.
Republican Rep. James Rogan, who collected at least $6.2 million, was ousted by Democratic state Sen. Adam Schiff, who raised at least $3.9 million. It was one of only a handful of House races where the biggest spender didn't get the job.
"I think Jim could have raised another $2 million or $3 million and not changed the outcome of the election," Rogan consultant Matt Keelen said on Thursday.
The district has become increasingly liberal and Democratic over the years as it has grown more ethnically diverse. "I think the outcome of this race would have been the same if there had been $10 spent, let alone $10 million," Schiff said.
Rogan drew 44 percent of the vote and Schiff drew 53 percent Tuesday to win the 27th District that includes the Los Angeles suburbs of Glendale, Pasadena and Burbank. At least 44 percent of the voters are registered Democrats and 37 percent Republican.
Rogan's high profile as an aggressive House manager during Clinton's impeachment trial galvanized donors, political parties and voters nationwide. The ousted congressman blames his role for being turned out of office.
"It opened the floodgate of money to both sides," said Jim Hayes, president of Political Data, a Burbank voter information firm. "He's a folk hero on the right and a pariah on the left."<