Bachmann spends most per vote among MN congressional hopefuls

There are endless ways to slice and dice the numbers behind the 2012 election, but one way to ascertain the cost of the campaigns is to look at how much each candidate spent to win a vote.

Among the candidates vying for a spot in the U.S. House of Representatives, Republican U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann comes out on top having spent more than $11 million from her congressional account. She received 179,241 votes, just a little more than 50 percent of the 6th Congressional District’s support.

That amounts to around $65 per vote, according to MPR News’ analysis – that’s more than any other congressional hopeful, and once again underscores how tight this race was for her compared to her prior elections in the 6th.

That number is a rough figure because Bachmann’s presidential bid complicated her finances.

Bachmann spent more than 7 times more than her DFL opponent Jim Graves, who spent roughly $8.70 on each vote.

The below spreadsheet shows where the state’s other congressional candidates stack up. Coming in second is 3rd Congressional District Republican U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen who spent $10.55 on each vote.

Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who ran a statewide re-election campaign, is not included in the below spreadsheet, but she spent only $2.66 on each of her 1.8 million votes. Her opponent, Kurt Bills, raised far less than Klobuchar and spent only 92 cents on each of his 868,000 votes.

The numbers only include spending through Oct. 17; candidates almost certainly spent more in the final days of the campaign. The data comes from the Federal Elections Commission and the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website.

Correction: An earlier version of this story said that Bachmann had spent $120 on each vote. That figure mistakenly included spending from Bachmann’s presidential campaign account. The numbers have been updated to reflect total disbursements from her congressional campaign only.