MONTPELIER — The Democratic nominee for governor out-raised her Republican opponent in the last few weeks, but was heavily outspent as the general election campaign began, according to financial disclosure reports filed by candidates and political groups Thursday.
Democratic gubernatorial nominee Sue Minter reported raising $102,000 in the 16 days since the last mandated reporting deadline on Aug. 15. She spent about $68,000 in the same time frame and now has about $85,000 cash-on-hand.
Among Minter’s donors since winning the Democratic nominee are Jake and Donna Carpenter, of Burton Snowboards, who donated $2,700 each. Former Gov. Howard Dean contributed $2,000, while outgoing Gov. Peter Shumlin’s campaign account and the Vermont-NEA Fund for Children and Public Education gave $4,000 each.
Minter spent $43,500 on polling by Washington, D.C.-based Hart Research Associates on Aug. 29. Most of her additional spending went to campaign salaries.
“I’m honored to have thousands of Vermonters supporting us in this effort. Together we will get Vermont’s economy working again by investing in our historic downtowns, working to attract and grow innovative businesses and by supporting our next generation with quality childcare and two years tuition free at community or technical college,” Minter said in a statement announcing her fundraising total.
Lt Gov. Phil Scott, the GOP nominee, raised about half of Minter’s total — $55,268. He received several large contributions, including $1,500 from pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, $2,000 from the Little Fuel Company in Morrisville, $2,000 from Montpelier lobbying group KSE Partners and $2,000 from GW Plastics in Bethel. Scott also received a $4,000 contribution from Florida Gov. Rick Scott, a fellow Republican.
Scott spent about $95,000 in the first two weeks of the general election campaign, including $12,000 for internal polling by Public Opinion Strategies, based in Alexandria, Va. His largest expenditure was $43,333 for media consulting by Washington, D.C.-based Optimus Consulting. He now has about $114,000 cash-on-hand.
Minter has now raised more than Scott in four straight reporting periods.
But Scott has so far had the advantage with outside spending.
The two super PACs supporting the major party gubernatorial candidates also filed financial disclosure reports Thursday. A Stronger Vermont, the super PAC bankrolled by the Republican Governors Association on behalf of Scott, reported $250,000 in contributions by the RGA, raising the total amount of contributions to $600,000 from the RGA.
A Stronger Vermont also reported spending $267,390, including $156,660 on television ads, $30,000 for online advertising, $36,220 on postcards and $35,500 for media consulting. The super PAC has now spent a total of $522,675 on behalf of Scott.
Meanwhile, Our Vermont, the super PAC funded by the Democratic Governors Association, reported no new contributions beyond the $100,000 already kicked in by the DGA. And it spent just $3,539, including $3,500 on consulting by Lang Global LLC.
In the lieutenant governor’s race, Chittenden County Sen. David Zuckerman, who won the Democratic and Progressive nominations, reported raising nearly $27,000 and spending $14,622. His contributions included $450 from wind developer David Blittersdorf of AllEarth Renewables, Inc. Blittersdorf has contributed a total of $1,800 to Zuckerman. Former Democratic Gov. Phillip H. Hoff also contributed $100. The VT-NEA Fund for Children and Public Education contributed $4,000.
As of the Sept. 1 report, Zuckerman’s total fundraising rose to $201,255 and his total expenditures stand at $167,867.
Zuckerman’s general election opponent, Republican Randy Brock, a former state senator and auditor, raised $21,155 and spent $5,430. Overall, Brock has raised $101,620 and spent $71,834.
In the current report, Brock received about half of his contributions from one family. Rodolphe Vallee, known best by his nickname “Skip,” contributed $3,000 and reached the maximum contribution level of $4,000, while his wife, Denise Vallee, kicked in $4,000. Skip Vallee’s company, R.L. Vallee, Inc., contributed another $4,000.
In the contested race for attorney general, Democrat T.J. Donovan reported raising $4,515 since the Aug. 15 reporting deadline. That sum includes $1,000 contributions from Bullrock Corporation and the Vermont Realtor PAC. Donovan reported $2,460 in expenditures. Overall, Donovan has raised $340,560 and spent $112,874.
His Republican opponent, Deborah Bucknam, raised $1,300 in the two-week period while spending $11,000. That brings her total fundraising to about $52,000 and total expenditures to $32,000.
The next reporting deadline is on Oct. 1.