Friday, April 2, 2010


Although official reports are not due until April 15th, the top two Democratic candidates in the U.S. Senate primary reported a strong first quarter of fundraising.

Lt. Gov. Bill Halter outpaced Lincoln by nearly two-to-one, according to figures provided by both campaigns.

Halter’s camp disclosed that more than $2 million was raised in his bid to unseat the embattled incumbent. A Lincoln spokesman tells Talk Business that the two-term Senator raised more than $1 million in the first quarter, her fifth quarter in a row of raising more than $1 million.

What did they spend it on and how much money does each candidate have in the bank? Those numbers won’t be officially released until an April 15th FEC reporting deadline. FYI, Lincoln still has a fundraising advantage, but Halter has certainly raised enough to be competitive.

Other federal office-seekers, including GOP candidates for the U.S. Senate and all four Congressional races, have been tight-lipped on their fundraising prowess.

2nd District Democratic Congressional candidate David Boling revealed that he raised more than $250,000 during the quarter and has $200,000 cash on hand. His campaign did not answer the question as to how much, if any, the candidate had loaned to his effort.

There may only be a handful of other serious fundraising successes in the field. Talk Business sources suggest that the first quarter may show less-than-impressive figures for nearly every federal office-seeker. One candidate told me this week that he felt like he ought to be writing a check to some of the contributors he was calling on for money.

My picks for above-average performers relative to the other candidates in their races: Boozman (Senate), Causey (CD-1), Wills (CD-2), Griffin (CD-2), and Womack (CD-3). I hope others prove me wrong; it’ll certainly make for a more interesting election season.