Putnam Maintains Fundraising Lead In Governor’s Race

May 14, 2018

In the Republican race for governor, new financial reports show Adam Putnam and Ron DeSantis continue to pursue different strategies in their quest for their party’s nomination.

Putnam, a two-term state agriculture commissioner, raised more than $2 million in April and spent $2.4 million, including more than $1.8 million launching his first television ad, the new filings with the state Division of Elections show.

DeSantis, a three-term congressman from Palm Coast, raised $819,000 in April and spent $570,000, the state records show. DeSantis has yet to run any television advertising but is relying on frequent appearances on Fox News to connect with Republican voters.

With total contributions of $28.85 million, Putnam maintained a solid hold as the strongest fundraiser in the governor’s race, among both Republicans and Democrats.

Even with his expenditures, Putnam had approximately $19 million in cash on hand as he moved into May.

DeSantis has raised nearly $8 million and had more than $7 million in cash heading into May, the reports show.

Putnam’s largest contributions reflect his status as the Tallahassee establishment’s favored candidate.

His political committee, Florida Grown, in April received $375,000 from the business-lobbying group Associated Industries of Florida, as well as $215,000 from a political committee affiliated with the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

The committee’s April haul included $100,000 from Publix Super Markets and $100,000 from William Becker, owner of Peace River Citrus Products, last month. And Putnam’s committee received $75,000 from pari-mutuel interests, including $25,000 from Patrick Rooney, president of the Palm Beach Kennel Club.

Phosphate companies contributed $50,000 to Putnam in April. He also received $25,000 from Geo Group, a private prison company, and $25,000 from St. Joe Co., a major developer.

The largest April contribution to DeSantis’ political committee, Friends of Ron DeSantis, was $100,000 from Ahmad Khawaja, the California-based founder of Allied Wallet, an online payment-processing company.

DeSantis’ committee also received $25,000 from a company affiliated with MCNA Dental Plans, a company that has provided dental care for Medicaid patients in Florida. The state is currently reviewing bids for a new contract that will separate dental services from the main Medicaid managed-care program.

House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O’Lakes, who announced this week he would not run for governor and endorsed Putnam, raised $49,500 for his Watchdog political committee in April, state records show.

Corcoran raised a total $6.9 million, with about $2 million left at the end of April. He has said he may use some of the money to support Republican efforts to maintain majorities in the state House and Senate.

Among Democrats, former U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham had the strongest fund-raising month in April, the records show. She raised more than $1 million, with a total of $7.4 million in contributions to her campaign account and Our Florida political committee. Graham had more than $4.7 million in cash in the accounts moving into May, the reports show.

Former Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine, the first Democratic candidate to run TV spots, spent $1.8 million on ads in April, the latest campaign finance reports show. Levine has raised a combined total of $9 million in his official campaign account and All About Florida political committee, while also loaning $5 million — including $2.2 million in April — to his campaign.

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum received $445,000 in contributions to his campaign account and political committee, Forward Florida, in April, the records show. He has raised a total of $3 million, and had $1.4 million cash on hand heading into May.

Winter Park businessman Chris King raised $115,000 in April, according to reports reflecting contributions to his campaign account and Rise and Lead political committee. He has raised a total of $3.76 million and has also loaned his campaign $825,000, including $400,000 in April.

by Lloyd Dunkelberger, The News Service of Florida

Comments

One Response to “Putnam Maintains Fundraising Lead In Governor’s Race”

  1. chillywilly on May 14th, 2018 9:35 am

    Adam Putnam is a honorable man with integrity and character. He did try to stand up to Rick Scott’s circus in Tallahassee and it cost him. When Putnam tried to give the state forestry fire fighters a raise, Scott vetoed it multiple times and Putnam called for a outside investigation to Scott’s firing of FDLE director Gerald Bailey , Scott did all this in retaliation to Putnam standing up to him. Rick Scott please just go away. He Took the fifth amendment 75 times in a deposition in the largest Medicare Fraud case in history.
    settled several million dollar law suits with our tax dollars for violating Florida Sunshine laws for open government, Google the firing of Gerald Bailey, former FDLE director
    Total disgrace what he did to a man with a impeccable law enforcement career..Keeps all his assets hidden in a blind trust in his wife’s name.
    Changed your automobile insurance, benefiting insurance companies so you only have 14 days after you have a accident. to file a medical claim, who does that benefit. Scott has already spent five million on TV ads. Spent millions of our tax dollars building a sea wall around a golf course in Orlando. Yet he vetoed most projects in our area. Scott has destroyed the department of health , department of corrections, need I say more. Please Vote.





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