Jack Conway holds fundraising edge in governor's race as Matt Bevin contributes more than half of his $1.7M haul

10/07/2015 06:49 PM

UPDATED: Democratic Attorney General Jack Conway has more than three times as much campaign cash in the bank as Republican Matt Bevin, according to the latest fundraising reports filed with the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance on Wednesday.

Conway’s campaign announced $2.3 million cash on hand in its coffers while Bevin has $674,427 in his account as of the 32-day pre-election deadline, campaign finance reports show.

Conway raised $4.4 million and transferred another $1.7 million from his primary campaign account, according to his campaign’s fundraising report filed with KREF.

Bevin, meanwhile, continued a trend of largely self-financing his candidacy after pumping nearly $2.6 million of his personal wealth into his $2.7 million primary campaign. Of the $1.7 million raised from May 20 through Friday, $995,100 came from his wallet, according to his campaign’s KREF filing.

Conway, in a statement, said he and his running mate, Rep. Sannie Overly, were “grateful for the overwhelming support and generosity that Kentuckians across the state have shown us over the course of our campaign.”

“It’s clear that folks are excited about our campaign, and that our message of growing Kentucky’s economy, creating good-paying jobs, investing in early childhood education and making government do more with less is resonating,” Conway said. “Our campaign is entering the final weeks of this race with momentum on our side and strongly positioned for victory — and Sannie and I are excited to continue crisscrossing the state, meeting with voters and sharing our plan to move Kentucky forward.”

Bevin’s campaign did not return a call seeking comment before its KREF report became public late Wednesday.

Independent candidate Drew Curtis, who reported $36,877 raised in the primary, received $42,909 during the reporting period and ended with $1,942 cash on hand, his KREF filing shows.

Down-ticket numbers

Democratic attorney general candidate Andrew Beshear continued to outpace Republican nominee Whitney Westerfield in campaign contributions, raising $1.3 million to the Hopksinville state senator’s $139,462.

Both candidates’ 32-day pre-election reports were posted to the KREF website late Wednesday.

Beshear, who transferred $1.4 million from his primary account, has $742,085 in the bank after spending nearly $2 million from May 20 through Friday, according to his campaign’s filing.

Westerfield has $110,321 remaining in his general election account, his campaign’s KREF report shows.

Democratic Auditor Adam Edelen’s filing with KREF shows his re-election campaign raised $405,765 in the latest reporting period, with $368,825 transferred from his primary account.

Edelen’s campaign reported $557,599 cash on hand and touted his fundraising success in a news release, saying the more than $915,000 he’s raised set a new fundraising record for a state auditor’s race.

“I’m thrilled and humbled by the outpouring of support we have received across the Commonwealth,” Edelen said in a statement. “It is clear that the unparalleled record of bipartisan accomplishment we have achieved over the last 4 years is resonating with Kentuckians, and I want to thank them for all of the support they have given us.”

His opponent, Republican Rep. Mike Harmon, reported $9,532 in cash on hand after raising $26,365 and transferring $2,603 from his primary account. That puts him at a sizable monetary disadvantage, with 58.5 times fewer dollars than the incumbent.

Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes reported raising $392,907 in her latest KREF report, far outpacing the $31,413 her opponent, Republican Steve Knipper, raised and transferred in the same time period. Grimes has $505,125 cash on hand for her re-election bid versus the $5,954 banked by Knipper, KREF filings show.

Republican Rep. Ryan Quarles reported $200,576 raised in his latest fundraising report for his agriculture commissioner campaign, more than matching the $189,442 he netted during the primary he won against fellow GOP Rep. Richard Heath.

Quarles has $159,006 cash on hand, according to his KREF report.

The latest filing of his opponent, Democrat Jean-Marie Lawson Spann, was not immediately available through KREF. She raised $70,335 during the primary.

Republican Allison Ball nearly doubled Democratic Rep. Rick Nelson in the race for state treasurer, netting $90,724 compared to Nelson’s $56,552.

Nelson, however, faces a significant cash disadvantage after spending $47,046 in the reporting period, much of it on the Covington-based consulting firm November Strategies. He has $9,505 banked to Ball’s $67,968 cash on hand, KREF filings show.

Kevin Wheatley

Kevin Wheatley is a reporter for Pure Politics. He joined cn|2 in September 2014 after five years at The State Journal in Frankfort, where he covered Kentucky government and politics. You can reach him at kevin.wheatley@charter.com or 502-792-1135 and follow him on Twitter at @KWheatley_cn2.

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