GAMBLING GROUP APPEARS TO BE BETTING ON BALLOT MEASURE
The pro-gambling “New Jobs and Revenue in Florida” political action committee — with the reported purpose of holding a statewide constitutional referendum on gambling — raised and spent approximately $600,000 during the second quarter of 2012.
TOP LEGISLATIVE FUNDRAISERS
Christina Johnson, founder of On3PR, provides comprehensive Campaign Finance Reports each cycle, a must read for those in the process. Track it here at www.On3PR.com.
The Top 5 Senate Incumbents (Total Money Raised)
SD 01 / Don Gaetz / $632,350.00; SD 30 / Lizbeth Benacquisto / $542,465.56; SD 32 / Joe Negron / $503,665.00; SD 20 / Jack Latvala / $455,082.00; SD 06 / John Thrasher / $450,565.00
The Top 5 Senate Candidates (Total Money Raised)
SD 21 / Denise Grimsley / $756,880.77; SD 26 / Bill Galvano / $418,249.38; SD 04 / Aaron Bean / $372,352.07; SD 08 / Dorothy Hukill / $278,010.34; SD 18 / Wilton Simpson / $273,000.00
The Top 5 House Incumbents (Total Money Raised)
HD 29 / Chris Dorworth / $296,022.00; HD 116 / Jose Felix Diaz / $243,835.00; HD 37 / Richard Corcoran / $239,412.25; HD 115 / Michael Bileca / $238,250.00; HD 80 / Matt Hudson / $233,133.00
The Top 5 House Candidates (Total Money Raised)
HD 7 / Halsey Brashears / $152,689.23; HD 77 / Dane Eagle / $133,407.72; HD 97 / Jared Moskowitz / $127,473.00; HD 78 / Heather Fitzenhagen / $115,794.30; HD 47 / Bob Brooks / $110,100.00
INCOMING SENATE PRESIDENT RAKES IN CASH
In State Senate District 1, incoming Senate President Don Gaetz received $160,090 in campaign contributions during the past three months. Gaetz, who is slated to become president after the November elections, has an overall total of $632,350. Among the groups that contributed heavily to Gaetz were optometrists, who are seeking legislative approval for expanded drug-prescribing powers. Gaetz’s only election opponent is no-party candidate Richard Harrison of Marianna. Harrison has not received any contributions, through he has loaned $2,000 to the campaign.
AARON BEAN, MIKE WEINSTEIN BUILDING IMPRESSIVE WARCHESTS FOR SD 4 CAMPAIGN
In Northeast Florida, former state Rep. Aaron Bean and Rep. Mike Weinstein are battling for the GOP nomination in a District 4 open seat. Bean reported raising $372,352 so far — $30,896 of it in the past quarter — while Weinstein took in $185,735 and made a $150,000 loan. (Via Bill Cotterell of the Florida Current.)
IN SD 7, ROB BRADLEY RAISES NEARLY $50K
Republican Senate District 7 candidate Rob Bradley raised just under $50,000 during the second quarter. Bradley, of Fleming Island, is a former prosecutor, and a Clay County commissioner and is the favorite because the district leans Republican. Bradley’s opponent, Democrat Wiliam Mazzota of Gainesville, has raised $2,090 and spent nearly all of it so far.
DOROTHY HUKILL TOPS FRANKBRUNO IN COMPETITIVE RACE FOR SD 8
In this key Senate battleground, Rep. Dorothy Hukill topped Democrat Frank Bruno in fund-raising during the past three months. Hukill brought in $45,856 and increased her overall total to $278,010. Bruno, chairman of the Volusia County Council, raised $30,405 during the quarter and has a total of $207,073. Hukill and Bruno are running in Senate District 8, which includes large swaths of Volusia and Marion counties.
WILL MCBRIDE LOANS HIS SD 14 CAMPAIGN $200K
Republican Orlando trial-lawyer William McBride has loaned his campaign $205,000 to try and defeat Democratic Rep. Darren Soto in their Senate District 14 contest. Soto raised a more-than-respectable $62,736 for the quarter, giving himself a total haul thus far of $94,386. (Via Aaron DeSlatte of the Orlando Sentinel.)
LEGG, WALLACE POST MODEST FUNDRAISING EFFORTS
Republicans John Legg and Rob Wallace posted modest fund-raising totals for the past three months in the Senate District 17 race in Hillsborough and Pasco counties. Legg, a House member from Pasco County, collected $21,595 during the year’s second quarter, bringing his overall total to $168,422. Wallace, a former House member from Tampa, collected $14,105 and has a total of $22,760. A third Republican in the race, John Korsak of Tampa, raised $5,330 during the quarter and has a total of $16,420. The lone Democratic candidate, Wes Johnson of Tampa, has collected $24,905 since entering the race in April.
WILTON SIMPSON STILL GOING STRONG IN SD 18
Republican newcomer Wilton Simpson continued showing his fund-raising prowess during the year’s second quarter, raising $52,675 for the Senate District 18 race, according to a state report. Simpson, a Trilby businessman and egg farmer, has raised a total of $273,000 as he seeks the seat in Pasco, Hernando and Sumter counties. The only other candidate in the race, Hudson Democrat Joshua Smith, has raised $2,000 since opening a campaign account in June.
JIM FRISHE PULLS IN $70K FOR PRIMARY VS. JEFF BRANDES
In State Senate District 22, Jeff Brandes has loaned $500,000 to his campaign. Brandes made a $250,000 loan Friday, after also making a $250,000 loan on June 1. He also has raised $68,450 in contributions since entering the District 22 race at the beginning of June. Jim Frishe raised $71,932.
FORMER SEN. PREZ TOM LEE BRINGS IN NEARLY 200K ; RACHEL BURGIN NO SLOUCH
Former Senate President Tom Lee of Brandon reported contributions of $199,585 for the District 24 open seat of departing Sen. Ronda Storms. Rep. Rachel Burgin has collected $122,223 in her race — about $50,000 of it in the past quarter.
ELLYN BOGDANOFF TAKES IN OVER $100K
In State Senate District 34, a race between incumbent senators that both parties are targeting, Sen.Ellyn Bogdanof reported raising $106,196 in contributions during the past three months. Bogdanoff, who is running in newly drawn District 34 in Broward and Palm Beach counties, has raised an overall total of $366,767. Second-quarter totals for Democratic candidate Maria Sachs, a senator from Boca Raton, raised $88,940 for an overall total of $173,915. Another Republican in the race, Mike Lameyer of West Palm Beach, has raised a total of $3,410.
RON SAUNDERS RAISES $61K FOR SENATE BID
In State Senate District 39, Rep. Ron Saunders raised $61,470 through July 6 in his bid to step up to the Senate in November. The House Democratic Leader from Key West is in a tough and crowded Democratic primary for the newly drawn Senate District 39, facing four other Democrats, including Rep. Dwight Bullard whose mother, Sen. Larcenia Bullard, is well known in south Miami-Dade County. Bullard’s fundraising totals weren’t yet posted early Saturday. Saunders’ campaign finance report runs a gamut of interests, but gaming interests, theme park and other tourism-related interests, health care and insurance and the construction industry are notably present on his list of contributors.
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MARTI COLEY REELS IN $50K
In House District 5, State Rep. Marti Coley, a Marianna Republican seeking a final term in the House, raised $50,196 in contributions during the past three months. Coley has raised a total of $108,046.
HALSEY BESHEARS TOP FUNDRAISING NEWCOMER, LEADS HOUSE DISTRICT 7 FIELD
Political newcomer Halsey Beshears is the top non-incumbent fundraiser running for the Florida House, having raised a total of $152,689 overall after raising $44, 421 this last quarter. Don Curtis, a Perry forestry company owner, raised $52,900 in contributions and made loans of $100,000 to his campaign. Former Rep. Jamey Westbrook of Port St. Joe also reported self-loans of $120,000 — plus $850 from supporters.
MICHELLE REHWINKEL VASILINDA DEPENDING ON NAME ID, BARELY OUTRAISES BRADLEY MAXWELL IN HD 9
Rep. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda reported contributions of $36,930 to date — scarcely more than the $30,870 Leon County Republican Chairman Bradley Maxwell of Tallahassee reported in his race against her. But District 9 is heavily Democratic and although she’s not over-confident, Rehwinkel Vasilinda said she has advantages of name identity and a four-session voting record. (Via Bill Cotterell of the News Service of Florida.)
DOC RENUART WITH MONEY EDGE IN HOUSE DISTRICT 17
Rep. Ronald “Doc” Renuart, R-Ponte Vedra Beach, easily topped his two Republican rivals in raising money during the year’s second quarter, collecting $90,856. Renuart has brought in a total of $155,132 for his campaign. St. Augustine Republican Mike Davis raised $32,526 during the quarter, increasing his total to $91,086. Another St. Augustine Republican, Kim Kendall, raised $6,050 during the quarter and has a total of $49,973. Renuart, a physician, has received money from numerous health-care groups and providers and also has received financial backing from the state Republican Party.
BRODEUR BEATING BUSH, HUDSON BEATING GAME IN CENTRAL FLORIDA RACES
Jason Brodeur is seeking a second term in the newly drawn House District 28 in eastern Seminole County, and has raised a total of $162,230. John Bush raised just 7,986 for the three month period from April through early July.
Second-quarter reports show Eileen Game raised $2,700 since filing in June, and loaned her campaign $10,300. Mike Horner, by comparison, raised $15,357 for the quarter and has amassed a total of $182,318 to hold onto the House District 40.
CHRIS DORWORTH AT NEARLY 300K OVERALL
District 34 incumbent Rep. Jimmie Smith has raised $66,472 for re-election, while two Democrats in the race have little more than $3,000 — including a $1,200 loan one of them made — to show for their primary heat. Nancy Argenziano, who won’t be on the ballot until November, said she has not really started fundraising yet. When she does, she is counting on her name identity and voting record to help her against Smith. (Via Bill Cotterell of the Florida Current.)
Republican Mike Fasano has raised $103,152 in contributions since entering the District 36 race in April.
JOE SAUNDERS ONE OF TOP DEM FUNDRAISERS, BUT REPUBLICAN MARCO PENA RAISES MORE DURING Q2
In House District 49, Joe Saunders, an equal rights advocate and community organizer, raised $44,920 during the second quarter, bringing his overall total to $100,651. Political newcomer Marco Pena raised $50,050 in his first quarter on the campaign trail.
STEVE CRISAFULLI ADDS TO CASH LEAD IN HOUSE DISTRICT 51
State Rep. Steve Crisafulli collected $47,525 during the past three months, giving him a total of $231,190 for his re-election bid in House District 51. Crisafulli’s only opponent, Cocoa Democrat Mike Blake, raised $2,525 during the year’s second quarter and has a total of $6,800. District 51 includes much of northern and central Brevard County.
JAKE RABURN RAKES IN $43K
In House District 57, Jake Raburn raised $43,125 during the year’s second quarter, giving him a total of $66,330 since entering the race in February. His Republican primary opponent, Brian Hollands of Riverview, has raised a total of $4,250, while Lithia Democrat Bruce Barnett has raised $820.
PETER NEHR AT $125K OVERALL
In House District 65, Rep. Peter Nehr raised $46,688 during the year’s second quarter, giving him $125,331 in his bid for a final term in the House. One of Nehr’s Republican primary opponents in District 65, Marg Baker of Palm Harbor, has raised a total of $1,621, while Philip Tropea of Palm Harbor, reported that he has not raised any cash contributions. The only Democrat in the race, Carl Zimmermann of Palm Harbor, has raised $5,075.
DWIGHT DUDLEY RAISES $31K FOR BATTLEGROUND RACE; FRANK FARKAS TRAILS
In House District 68, Dwight Dudley reported bringing in $31,165. The campaign reported expenses of $769, leaving cash-on-hand of $30,396. Former State Rep. Frank Farkas raised just under $20,000 during his first weeks on the campaign trail.
DAVID PHILLIPS, KATHLEEN PETERS BOTH RAISING GOOD MONEY FOR HD 69 PRIMARY
With no incumbent in the race, candidates in House District 69 divided contributions during the past three months. Republican David Phillips of St. Petersburg topped the fund-raising with $50,662, according to state reports. Another Republican, Kathleen Peters of South Pasadena, collected $24,895 during the quarter and has an overall total of $35,010. Democrat Josh Shulman of St. Petersburg collected $18,074 since opening a campaign account in April.
DANE EAGLE & HEATHER FITZENHAGEN POST STRONG REPORTS
In House District 77, Dane Eagle raised $35,000 for the second quarter, bringing his overall total to $140,000. In House District 78, Fort Myers Republican Heather Fitzenhagen collected $50,417 in contributions during the past three months, bringing her total to $115,794 in the House District 78 race, according to state records. With no incumbents in the Lee County race, Fitzenhagen has received backing from groups and businesses ranging from the Florida Medical Association to the Florida Beer Wholesalers. An updated campaign-finance report for her opponent in the Republican primary, Jonathan Martin of Fort Myers, had not been posted on the state Division of Elections website Thursday.
ADAM FETTERMAN & LARRY LEE IN MONEY BATTLE IN HD 84
In House District 84, Larry Lee, Jr., D-Fort Pierce, has raised $52,210 since entering the House District 84 race in May, outdistancing former Rep. Adam Fetterman who is seeking a return to Tallahassee. Fetterman, a Fort Pierce Democrat, has collected $33,685 since May. Another Democratic candidate, L. Kevin Stinnette of Fort Pierce, has raised $3,694. Republican Michelle Miller of Fort Pierce brought in $22,825 during the past three months.
LOOKING TO REPLACE SAUNDERS, HOLLY RASCHEIN PULLS IN $37K FOR HD 120 RACE
Seeking to replace her term-limited boss in House District 120, Holly Raschein raised just over $37K during her first full quarter on the campaign trail, while Democrat Ian Whitney, a favorite of state Democrats, pulled in just over $17K.
And, finally, in the Palm Beach State Attorney race, Dave Aronberg raised $180,000 during the second quarter, bringing his overall total to nearly $455,000.
Material from the News Service of Florida was used in this report.