Republican Gov. John Kasich built on his financial edge in the 2014 gubernatorial campaign by raising another $1.7 million in the latest reporting period, about twice as much as that raised by his Democratic challenger, Ed FitzGerald.
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Reports filed Friday showed Mr. Kasich ended the primary period and heads into the general election campaign with $9.3 million in his political account. Mr. FitzGerald, the Cuyahoga County executive, raised $835,571 and ended with $1.9 million in campaign cash.
The Kasich campaign spent $942,005, including $740,950 with Strategic Media Placement Inc. of Delaware, Ohio, to buy television time and other media placement. The FitzGerald campaign spent $440,342, much of it on advertising placement through the New Media firm of Washington and with the Ohio Democratic Party for staffing.
FitzGerald campaign manager Nick Buis said the campaign has “serious momentum,” and had raised money in all 88 counties.
“We raised over $200,000 more than our previous filing in half the time, and recruited over 3,600 new contributors. It’s clear that the governor’s position on S.B. 310 [rolling back alternative energy quotas], women’s health care, education, and tax cuts for the wealthy is increasingly causing Ohioans to join Team FitzGerald,” Mr. Buis said.
The Kasich campaign counted 3,100 contributions during mid-April to early June period, with a total raised of $12.3 million since January, 2011.
“Governor Kasich’s support is strong and growing as Ohioans continue to see positive results around the state, and with more than $9.3 million in the bank going into the summer, I’m confident we’ll have the resources we need to continue telling Ohio’s comeback story,” Kasich campaign manager Matt Carle said.
Mr. Kasich’s single biggest contribution was $500,000 from the Ohio Republican Party. Mr. FitzGerald’s biggest contributor was the Ohio Democratic Party, with $117,500. One of Mr. Kasich’s individual contributors was David Koch of New York, one of the conservative billionaire Koch brothers, who gave the maximum, $12,155.
Republicans dominated fund-raising in every statewide race.
In the state treasurer race, incumbent Republican Josh Mandel raised $630,972 and had $2.9 million cash on hand. His opponent, State Rep. Connie Pillich (D., Cincinnati), raised $523,340 during the period, and had $1.5 million cash on hand.
Republican Attorney General Mike DeWine raised $770,207 and ended the reporting period with $2.7 million in his campaign war chest. Democratic challenger David Pepper, a former Hamilton County commissioner, raised $458,408 and had an ending campaign total of $1.4 million.
Republican incumbent Secretary of State Jon Husted raised $513,262 and had a $2.8 million balance on hand. His Democratic opponent, State Sen. Nina Turner (D., Cleveland), reported raising $190,000 and ending with $488,957 in the bank.
Republican Auditor David Yost raised $216,441 and ended the period with $1.1 million. Opponent State Rep. John Carney (D., Columbus) raised $181,228 and had $736,483 left in his account.
State Democratic Chairman Chris Redfern said the Republican cash dominance is to be expected for incumbents. “We’re running against an incumbent governor. He’s pretty well tied into Wall Street. He’s used JobsOhio in a way that has benefited his campaign tremendously. John Kasich benefits tremendously because he has access to power, both public and private, and he sells that access,” Mr. Redfern said.
Chris Schrimpf, spokesman for the Ohio Republican Party, said the support shows Republicans are getting the job done. “Ohio Republicans continue to earn strong support because of the work they have done to turn our state around. Every Republican officeholder has more cash on hand than their opponent,” Mr. Schrimpf said. “The support largely speaks for itself.”
At the Supreme Court level, Republican Justice Sharon Kennedy raised $213,808 and ended with $463,059. Her opponent, State Rep. Tom Letson (D., Warren), raised $350 and had a balance of $247. Republican Justice Judith French raised $196,507 and ended the reporting period with $369,716. Her Democratic opponent, Cuyahoga Common Pleas Judge John O’Donnell, reported raising $23,745 and ending with a balance of $93,301.
Reports out of the special election for Toledo Council District 2 show the winner, endorsed Democrat Matt Cherry, spent $26,808. His closest competitor in the four-way race, independent Marcia Helman, spent $23,809.
Columbus bureau chief Jim Provance contributed to this report.