- Associated Press - Monday, February 8, 2016

BOSTON (AP) - U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren won’t face re-election until 2018, but she’s raising campaign cash at a strong clip.

Federal Election Commission records show the Massachusetts Democrat collected more than $2.7 million in contributions in 2015, ending the year with over $3.1 million in her campaign account.

The donors hail from nearly every state - evidence that Warren’s appeal goes far beyond Massachusetts.

The smallest donation was $1 and the largest was $2,700, the maximum allowed by law. Often those making small donations went on to make additional small donations throughout the year - another sign of the depth of Warren’s appeal.

Warren has become a hero to the liberal wing of her party with her critique of Wall Street and the banking industry. Her calls for changes to the nation’s higher education system, including lowering the interest rates for people trying to pay off student loans, has also struck a nerve.

Warren reported spending more than $1.2 million during 2015. The expenses included polling, travel, Internet advertising, flowers, postage, Internet consulting services and meals.

Warren’s political action committee - PAC for a Level Playing Field - also had a good year, pulling in more than $635,000 and ending the year with nearly $1.2 million in the account.

She has used the PAC to help support the campaigns of other Democratic candidates, doling out $225,000 from the account in 2015.

Leadership PACs like Warren’s are typically created by political figures to help support political parties and other candidates for office. The PACs can also help raise a member’s political profile in Congress.

Unlike Warren’s campaign account, the vast majority of the donations to her PAC came in the form of larger donations, many for the maximum $5,000 allowed per year.

Two candidates Warren hasn’t given money to are the two Democratic presidential hopefuls - Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. Warren hasn’t endorsed either candidate, even as the rest of Massachusetts’ all-Democrat congressional delegation backs Clinton.

Activists tried unsuccessfully last year to draft Warren as a candidate for president.

The two biggest donations of $15,000 each from Warren’s PAC went to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and a fund that helps the committee cover the cost of election recounts. Warren also gave an additional $30,000 from her campaign account to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Warren’s current fundraising numbers pale in comparison to the $41 million that flooded into her account during the 2012 election, when she successfully ousted Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown.

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