Democrat Keith Allred raised more money in his campaign for governor in the beginning of 2010 than incumbent Republican Gov. Butch Otter, though Otter has more cash on hand and has received several large gifts since the May 9 reporting period. The governor also limited his fundraising activity while the Legislature was in session.
Allred raised $241,000 from January 1 to May 9, while Otter raised $193,000, according to paperwork filed with the Idaho secretary of state. The next biggest fundraiser in the governor’s race was Rex Rammell with $55,000. Otter started the year out with more money than any of his opponents and still has more money left to spend on the primary and general election. He had $201,000 cash on hand as of May 9, while Allred had $130,000.
"The numbers add up to one thing," Allred said in a news release. "We are picking up momentum and are right where we want to be." Allred has raised more during the primary race than Democrat Jerry Brady did four years ago in his unsuccessful run for governor.
Otter’s campaign manager, Debbie Field, said the governor’s done well in fundraising, given that he didn’t hold fundraising events while the Legislature was in session. “We’ve raised almost $20,000 in six weeks, so we feel pretty good about that,” she told IdahoReporter.com. According to the report with the secretary of state, Otter’s campaign took in $98,000 from January to late March, while lawmakers were in session at the state Capitol. Both Otter and Allred said that the large majority of their contributions came from people and businesses in Idaho.
Among other candidates for governor, Rammell spent $43,000 of the $55,000 he raised. He also donated $10,000 to his campaign. Anti-abortion activist Walt Bayes spent $22,000 of his own money on his campaign. Ron "Pete" Peterson of Boise loaned almost $16,000 to his campaign. Ada County Commissioner Sharon Ullman contributed $1,800 to her campaign and has spent all $2,500 she has earned up to May 9. Tamara Wells of Post Falls raised and spent $2,000 of her own money and reported no travel expenses. Allred’s primary opponent, Lee Chaney of Preston, raised $2,000, with more than $1,000 coming out of his own pocket.
In the lieutenant governor’s race, Brad Little holds a large lead over his challengers, raising $55,000, and having $90,000 in cash on hand as of May 9. Steve Pankey, a former Constitution Party candidate for Lincoln County sheriff, raised no money for the GOP primary. Marine veteran Joshua Blessinger raised $508, with $500 coming from Peterson, who encouraged him to run.
Incumbent Supreme Court Justice Roger Burdick leads challenger Judge John Bradbury in fundraising for a Supreme Court seat. Burdick raised $74,000, and received contributions from Little and several state lawmakers and lobbyists. Burdick has pledged not to look at the list of donors to his campaign. Bradbury raised $58,000, including a $10,000 contribution and $32,000 loan to his own campaign. Bradbury has spent all but $1,000 of his campaign donations, while Burdick had $35,000 available in his campaign account as of May 9.
In the only other contested primary statewide, State Controller Donna Jones raised $20,000 for her re-election campaign. Her challenger, Todd Hatfield of McCall, raised $23,000. Jones has $5,000 in loans and debt, while Hatfield has $10,000. Jones had $11,000 before the start of 2010, and had a cash balance of $15,000 left as of May 9.