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The Federal Election Commission announced Wednesday that congressional candidates raised a combined $285 million in the first half of 2011 — a new record for a six month period in a non-election year.House candidates raised $151.6 million — a 15.6 per cent increase over the same period in the 2010 cycle. Candidates for the Senate raised $103.1 million, a 10 per cent increase over the last time the seats were contested in the 2006 cycle.
Political action committees played a major role in House fundraising — accounting for 44 per cent of of donations. For Senate candidates, PACs brought in 17 per cent of receipts.