Tuesday, July 16, 2013

FOLLOWING MONEY IN ARIZONA'S POLITICS: Frosh Congresswoman Sinema's Campaign War Chest Crosses $500,000 Mark; Totals For Three GOP Challengers

(Corrections, 4:35pm: The initial article reported Sinema's second quarter individual contributions as her total contributions.  She has raised $712,417.78, including $387,551.12 in the second quarter. 7/17/13 @ 12:10pm: Corrected to reflect that Sinema's 2nd quarter receipts doubled her total, but was not twice as much as the 1st quarter receipts. )

(Updates, 4:55pm: Due to an apparent glitch in the FEC website, GOP candidate Andrew Walter's campaign committee's financial report was not appearing in a search of recently-filed Arizona reports.  The campaign committee did file yesterday, and its results and a reaction are now included in the article.  Further, Arizona's Politics received a call from Rep. Sinema's spokesperson with a reaction.)

In the 2nd quarter of 2013, first-term Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema (D-CD9) more than doubled her total fundraising receipts, building up a campaign war chest for next year's election of nearly $550,000. Four Republicans have announced their plans of challenging Sinema, but only Wendy Rogers is even in the same ballpark.

Sinema's finance report indicates that her fundraising efforts are starting early and strongly.  She raised nearly $387,551.12 in the second three-month period - more than she had in the previous quarter.  Her cash on hand ballooned from approximately $307,000 to $547,000. Approximately $55,000 of her 2nd quarter receipts came from PAC's and other political committees.  (Another $90,000 in contributions came through earmarked donations to conduits, such as ActBlue or the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.)

Rodd McLeod, a Sinema campaign spokesman, told Arizona's Politics that the Congresswoman "is preparing for the 2014 campaign, but the main focus is representing the people of the district."  He noted that she is currently working hard on the issues of student loan rates and increasing the jobs base.

Arizona's Politics has already reported on the surprisingly strong fundraising effort by 2nd-time GOP challenger retired Air Force Lt. Col. Wendy Rogers. Rogers' six-month contributions total (approximately $225,000) nearly matched Sinema's 2nd quarter contributions, and she has $206,438.41 in the bank as of June 30.

Rogers told Arizona's Politics that she is "proud and extremely humbled that we have raised over $125,000 this quarter. In the midst of a very difficult economy, to have over 300 individual donors invest in me is an honor and a responsibility that I take very seriously. Our grassroots support grows daily and the excitement about our race is building nationwide."

1st-time candidate Andrew Walter began with an impressive fundraising total since joining the fray six weeks ago.  Walter's committee reports having received $112,658.40 in contributions.  He now has $122,120.37 cash on hand.  Walter said, via news release, that "as a citizen candidate, I am grateful for the outpouring of support from the people of Arizona's 9th District."

Former Chandler City Councilmember Martin Sepulveda is also making his 2nd attempt at the office.  He filed that he has not yet raised any monies for this campaign, but that he does have $3,338.61 in the bank after paying off his 2012 campaign debts.

Businessman Vernon Parker - who defeated Rogers and Sepulveda (among others) in the 2012 GOP primary, but lost narrowly to Sinema in the general election - indicated that he had a net negative fundraising quarter.  Though he received $13,387 in contributions, he spent $14,814 on the direct mail efforts;  his cash on hand dropped from $11,062.00 to $9,525.12.  (In addition, Parker's 2012 campaign committee is still nearly $17,000 in the red.)

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