Jul 18, 2022 - Politics

Republican gubernatorial candidate Robson goes big on self-funding

Illustration of a giant dollar sign bursting through a brick wall.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Campaign finance reports for state-level and federal races were due Friday afternoon.

Why it matters: They show who's raking in the big bucks and who's struggling as candidates head into the home stretch before the Aug. 2 primary.

  • The reports cover the second quarter of the year, so they won't reflect the substantial amount of money that some campaigns have spent since early voting began on July 6.

Governor: Republican Karrin Taylor Robson continued to dominate the money race due to a level of self-funding that's unprecedented in a state-level race in Arizona.

By the numbers: Robson gave her campaign another $9.4 million, bringing her total level of self-funding to more than $13.3 million through the end of June.

  • Yes, and: She brought in $723,000 from outside donations.
  • GOP front-runner Kari Lake raised more than $1.2 million last quarter and had about $400,000 on hand to start the month.

Robson reported having only about $91,000 on hand at the end of the quarter.

  • She's spent nearly $2.2 million on TV ads alone since the start of July and is expected to spend heavily as she tries to overtake Lake's lead in the race.
  • Lake's presence on the airwaves has been negligible, with her spending only about $661,000 on TV ads so far.

The other side: Democratic front-runner Katie Hobbs raised $1.6 million last quarter, bringing her total haul up to nearly $4.8 million. She had about $3.4 million on hand to start the month.

  • Marco Lopez raised nearly $450,000 and had $227,000 on hand.

Secretary of state: On the Republican side, state Rep. Mark Finchem raised nearly $279,000 and businessman Beau Lane raised nearly $266,000.

  • State Rep. Shawnna Bolick pulled in $71,000 last quarter and state Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita raised $13,000.

In the Democratic primary, former Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes raised $165,000 and House Minority Leader Reginald Bolding raised $98,000.

  • Bolding benefitted from more than $1.2 million spent by outside groups boosting his campaign, but his connection to one of the dark money groups raises questions about possible coordination, the Arizona Agenda and Arizona Republic reported.

Attorney General: Rodney Glassman ended the quarter with a massive financial advantage over his rivals in the six-way GOP primary, raising nearly $590,000, spending $951,000 and having $1.1 million on hand, more than the other five Republican candidates combined.

Of note: Abe Hamadeh, who has been endorsed by Trump, reported in April that he'd received a $1 million loan from his brother but that he repaid the entire amount just days after the end of the quarter.

  • That didn't become publicly known until he filed his latest report on Friday.
  • Hamadeh had just under $15,000 on hand at the end of June.

Kelly's cash: Democratic incumbent U.S. Senator Mark Kelly, who doesn't have a primary challenger, raised $13.6 million in the past quarter for a total of $24.9 million cash on hand.

  • The leading GOP challenger, Blake Masters, raised just $827,000 and has $1.58 million cash on hand.
  • Another Republican candidate, Jim Lamon, brought in $1.2 million ($1 million of his own).
  • Go deeper: Senate GOP fundraising flop

Zoom out: Republican Congressman David Schweikert is facing a well-funded primary challenger in the new CD1 — and his fundraising isn't keeping up.

  • Former Arizona Bankers Association President Tanya Wheeless dominated the fundraising race in the five-way GOP primary in CD4.
  • Former state legislature colleagues Kristen Engel has a slight fundraising edge over her former state legislature colleague Daniel Hernandez ahead of the Democratic primary in CD6.
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