Gov. Peter Shumlin has crested the $1 million mark in fundraising, and he has three times more to spend in this election cycle than his Republican rival state Sen. Randy Brock.
Shumlin has about $870,000 left in his war chest, while about $240,000 remains in Brock’s kitty.
Brock has brought in a total of $647,343, and nearly half of that, or $300,000, came out of his own pocket.
In the last cycle, the Franklin County state senator generated about $62,000. A third, of Brock’s take, or $20,000, came from Romney’s Victory PAC via the Vermont Republican Federal Election Committee. Shumlin meanwhile drew about $162,000, much of it from large out-of-state donors, including a number of corporate contributors and lobbying groups.
Last Thursday, Shumlin flew out to Los Angeles for an LGBT fundraiser held by businessman Paul Morabito, a gay activist and former CEO of the largest wholesale fuel dealer in Nevada. The governor made an appearance on a public TV station while he was in California.
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Judging from the take so far (Alex MacLean, the governor’s campaign manager says more money is on the way), the 2.5 day jaunt was worth it financially. Shumlin has picked up about $4,000 for the red eye there and back so far.
Was it worth it politically? Hard to say.
Brock accused the governor of “taking his campaign out of state” and he chastised Shumlin, again, for refusing to engage more debates here at home.
“It is astonishing with a schedule so busy with no room for an hour long debate outside of media events in Chittenden or Washington county, that the governor has the availability to travel across the country for three days,” Brock said. “Vermont needs a governor whose focus is Vermont. I will be a governor who works with Vermonters to resolve the problems we face here in our state.”
In response, MacLean rolled out the same quote she’s been delivering for several weeks — since news came out that Shumlin would not agree to debates with Brock outside of media formats: “The governor is doing seven debates with Randy Brock over a time period of roughly eight weeks. There will be plenty of opportunity for Vermonters to hear the two candidates debate.”
This isn’t the first time Shumlin has gone outside the Green Mountain State’s borders looking for cash this campaign season. The governor also raised money at a Democratic Governors Association event in Aspen in July, according to MacLean, and he has a fundraiser with a LGBT group in Rhode Island in the next few weeks. His official campaign schedule this month includes as many meetings with small donors in Vermont as it does public appearances.
Why so much effort to raise so much more when he holds a 35-point lead over Brock, according to an August poll? Is the specter of Super PAC spending a factor? Is the governor looking forward to a 2014 U.S. Senate race?
MacLean offered another oft-repeated response. “Raising money is an important component of modern day campaigning and we want to make sure we have the resources for the governor to get his message out there to Vermonters,” she said.
Expenditures by both candidates have been relatively low in the last month.
Brock spent about $60,000 over the last 30 days, most of it on marketing activities, consultants and Darcie Johnston, his contract campaign manager. He has hired Dresner, Wickers, Barbar and Sanders, a San Francisco consulting firm, the Cincinnati-based Prosper Group and SCM Associates in Dublin, Ohio.
Shumlin spent about $35,000, most of it on campaign staff, including MacLean and Erika Wolffing, who handles his fundraising.
Brock’s notable contributors
Vermont Republican Federal Election Committee, $20,000
Jim Douglas for Governor, $1,000
Angelo Pizzagalli, construction company owner, $2,000
Greenwich Investment Management, Inc., $2,000
Vermont Republican State Committee, $1,000
AT&T Services, $1,000
L&D Markings Corp. and Worksafe Traffic Control Industries, $1,000
Mary Evslin, co-owner of NG Advantage, $500
Shumlin’s notable contributors
AFL-CIO Committee on Political Education, $6,000
American Federation of Teachers, union that has tried to form a collective bargaining group for child care providers in Vermont, $6,000 *
Democracy for America, Howard Dean’s political action committee, $2,000
Patient Choices of Vermont, death with dignity advocacy group, $5,000 *
NORML, advocacy group for decriminalizing marijuana, $2,000 *
*Shumlin has said he would support the causes espoused by these groups.
Anheuser Busch Companies, $1,000
VISA USA, $2,000
Casella Waste Systems, Inc., $2,000
Casella Construction, Inc., $2,000
Corrections Corporation of America, Tennessee, LLC, $2,000 *
Iberdola Renewables, LLC, $1,000 **
Brookfield Power US Asset Management LLC $2,000
Ingram Construction, Co., $2,000
Subaru of New England, $2,000
Weedmaps Media, a group that locates medical marijuana dispensaries, $2,000
*The state of Vermont has placed inmates in private, for-profit CCA facilities in Tennessee.
**Iberdola is looking to place wind towers in Windham and Grafton.
Notable individual donors
Pritam Singh, a Florida Keys real estate developer and the single largest contributor to Shumlin in this last reporting period: $12,000 through five businesses (PK Management, Singh Cable Co., Marathon Resort Management, Boat House Associates, Singh Marathon resort) and a personal donation
George and Andrew Soros, philanthropists: $4,000
Elizabeth and Eric Miller, commissioner of the Department of Public Service and her husband, an attorney with Sheehey Furlong and Behm: $4,000
Peter and Rosemary Zamore, Peter is an attorney with Sheehey Furlong and Behm, which represents Gaz Metro: $2,000
Barbara Carris, wife of state Sen. Bill Carris: $2,000
Tony Pomerleau, real estate developer and philanthropist: $2,000
Bobby Sands, Windsor County state’s attorney and outspoken supporter of decriminalization of marijuana: $2,000
Tom Evslin, co-owner of NG Advantage and former Douglas administration official: $1,000
Peter Bradford, former NRC official: $1,100
State Sen. Dick Mazza: $1,600
Jerry O’Neill, attorney who sued Catholic Church on behalf of sex abuse victims, $1,500
Editor’s note: This story was updated at 6 a.m. and 6:23 a.m. Sept. 18, 2012.