Calif. AG Harris has $3M in campaign fund, no opponent

By David Yates | Feb 11, 2014

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Legal Newsline) - Even though no competition has stepped forward yet, California Attorney General Kamala Harris is prepared if they do with $3 million cash on hand - a sum bolstered by donations from out-of-state law firms.

Campaign finance reports show Harris, a rising star in the Democratic party, raised $2,511,496.30 in 2013 and currently has more than $3 million in her war chest.

According to, the attorney general is running unopposed this year. In California, the top two vote-getters in the primary election advance to the general election, regardless of party affiliation.

However, the deadline for filing for a California state race is March 7, leaving a few weeks for a surprise candidate to enter the race.

Harris' campaign finance reports show she received contributions from dozens of attorneys, including trial lawyers from out-of-state law firms.

Last February alone, eight donations came from the Dickstein Shapiro law firm and its attorneys.

Dickstein Shapiro, based in Washington, D.C., is also a lobbying group, with six offices across the U.S.

In 2013, the firm had a total lobbying income of $7,835,000, according to

According to the Dickstein Shapiro website, one of the firm's areas of focus is state attorneys general. The site boosts that attorneys general are the new "sheriffs in town" and the firm knows who they are.

"With the nation's preeminent State Attorneys General (AG) Practice, Dickstein Shapiro provides clients boutique-quality service in AG legal and policy matters built upon decades of experience with AGs across the country," the website states.

Other notable contributions from attorneys under the employ of out-of-state law firms include:

  • A donation from Miami attorney Michael Kosnitzky of the major law firm Boies, Schiller & Flexner;

  • A donation from Gilbert Backenroth of the New York firm Hahn & Hessen;

  • A donation from Drew Edmondson, a former state attorney general, of the Oklahoma law firm GableGotwals; and

  • A donation from John Knox Walkup of Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs in Nashville, Tenn.

As far as donations from attorneys for prominent California law firms go, Harris received donations from:

  • John Lien of Mayer Brown in Los Angeles;

  • Hamilton Candee of Altshuler Berzon in San Francisco;

  • Leah Bishop of Loeb & Loeb in Los Angeles; and

  • Trenton Norris of Arnold & Porter in San Francisco.

Reach David Yates at

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Organizations in this Story

Boies, Schiller & Flexner Mayer Brown

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