Sarah Palin PAC takes fundraising nosedive

Of the money it is raising, most going toward travel and consulting

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Sarah Palin’s leadership political action committee has taken a fundraising nosedive this year — and most of the money it has raised isn’t directly going toward helping her fellow Republicans seeking office, new Federal Election Commission filings show.

SarahPAC brought in more than $460,000 during the first six months of the year, a sizable amount by most PAC’s standards. But the haul falls well short of what the former GOP vice presidential candidate and Alaska governor’s PAC raised at the same points during the past two years.

By the end of June 2012, for example, Palin’s PAC had raised nearly $1.2 million on the year. In 2011, that figure stood closer to $1.7 million.

SarahPAC spent about $500,000 during the first half of 2013 and had more than $1.1 million cash on hand through June 30, FEC filings indicate.

Palin’s PAC spent the vast majority of that money on consultants, travel, speechwriting and other logistical fees.

The only candidate who received a contribution this year from SarahPAC was Rep. Jason Smith, R-Mo., who won a special election for the state’s 8th congressional district seat in June.

Small donors continue to be a boon for the group: About three-fourths of the funds SarahPAC has raised so far this year came from individual contributions of less than $200.

Palin’s overall popularity has also suffered of late, a Public Policy Polling survey released Tuesday indicates.

If Palin were to run for U.S. Senate against Democratic incumbent Mark Begich, D-Alaska, Begich would “cruise” to re-election, the poll states.