JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – One week away from the August primary election, and the final fundraising numbers have come in.
Here’s what we learned from the 8-day reports:
State Auditor’s race
The Republican primary in this race has become very tight, with each candidate bringing something to the table. But in terms of money, Republican David Wasinger still outreaches that of his opponents, having spent roughly $450,000 during this period, with $312,254 on-hand. But it’s worth noting that Curtman has raised the most in this last cycle, and has the second highest total cash on hand among the GOP candidates.
But whichever candidate walks away as the winner on Tuesday will be quickly looking to make up for lost time in terms of raising money, as Galloway has been banking hundreds of thousands of dollars as the candidates fight for the GOP nomination.
State Senate races
The most hotly covered primary this year has to be that in Senate District 18, with four candidates looking to replace the term-limited Sen. Brian Munzlinger.
Recent polls have shown the race within striking distance for each of the candidates due to the number of undecided voters, but Rep. Nate Walker came in late with monster-sized contributions in this last cycle, raising $164,050.
Cindy O’Laughlin still remains the one with the most money spent after leading in cash earlier, spending just over $200k, but Rep. Craig Redmon raised nearly $40,000 to bolster his own spending.
O’Laughlin’s campaign has been battling attacks in recent weeks that have been backed by trial attorneys, with $170,000 being put against her by the “Missouri’s Future” PAC, the same one used by the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys back in 2012 to unseat former Sen. Jim Lembke, dumping $500,000 into that effort.
In the race to replace Sen. Rob Schaaf, things have turned to a more aggressive nature, as Schaaf himself has entered the fray in his mission to endorse Harry Roberts and help him gain the seat.
Opponent Tony Luetkemeyer looks to be the frontrunner, according to recent polls, but has been out-raised by Roberts in the last final push, with Roberts bringing in $44,775 compared to Luetkemeyer’s $15,100. However, Luetkemeyer has also outspent Roberts, $285,672 to $147,237.
The interesting development here is that Schaaf has now filed an ethics complaint against Darlington Road Corporation, who is responsible for the three billboards attacking him back in May. Schaaf says those billboards, as well as recent mailers, show coordination between Darlington Road Corporation and Missouri Senate Conservatives Fund to discredit Schaaf and lessen the impact of his endorsement.
The Senate District 14 race has also been an interesting one, with three strong Democratic candidates vying for the nomination. Rep. Joe Adams has spent the most in these last few weeks, totaling $58,020, and raising $15k. Sharon Pace spent $18,630 and has raised $1,845. But the most successful in donations has been Brian Williams, who brought in $21,475, while spending $18,777.
Williams still has an advantage in cash on hand right now, with $44,157 in the coffers, compared to Adams’ $16,992 and Pace’s $11,085.
And in Senate District 16, Justin Brown continues to lead in contributions, raising $30,291, compared to the $12,520 of Rep. Diane Franklin and Rep. Keith Frederick’s $23,354. Brown has also massively outspent the other candidates in recent times, spending $194,996.
Some noteworthy items:
Sen. Jill Schupp continues to be a moneymaker for the Democrats, having banked nearly $1 million this election cycle.
In the fight against right-to-work, unions have continued dumping cash into their bid to can the proposed law, with a coalition spending nearly $7 million into advertisements in July.
And here’s a look at the top earners in the House this period:
Elijah Haahr – $86,375.00
Pat Rowe Kerr – $66,455.00
Raleigh Ritter – $35,100.00
Steve Butz – $26,295.00
Jack Bondon – $25,617.50
Jean Evans – $23,085.56
Steve Roberts – $22,420.00
Kathy Swan – $21,830.94
Rocky Miller – $20,017.50
Benjamin Peters was a reporter for The Missouri Times and Missouri Times Magazine and also produced the #MoLeg Podcast. He joined The Missouri Times in 2016 after working as a sports editor and TV news producer in mid-Missouri. Benjamin is a graduate of Missouri State University in Springfield.