Rep. Walt Minnick, the Democrat representing the 1st Congressional District, and challenger Raul Labrador both pulled in large amounts of campaign contributions during the last three months, with Minnick raising more than $525,000 and Labrador more than $250,000.
Minnick has held a large fundraising lead over Labrador, a state representative from Eagle who entered the race in December and defeated a better-funded opponent in the Republican primary.
Minnick’s fundraising totals from July through September are roughly equal to the amount Labrador has raised since starting his campaign. Since the beginning of 2009, Minnick has raised more that $2 million for his re-election efforts.
Labrador said he’s happy with the increase in support from donors, which shows a positive momentum. “These donations will allow me to deliver the message of limited government, lower taxes, repealing Obamacare and getting government off the backs of small businesses,” he said in a news release.
Labrador’s $250,000 total includes in-kind contributions, which could be food, supplies, and other non-monetary gifts. Minnick’s total doesn’t include in-kind contributions.
Neither campaign released the amount of cash on hand for the final weeks of the campaign. Minnick held a 16-to-1 lead in available cash at the end of June. Minnick’s campaign manager John Foster said that the campaign has all the money it needs for its advertising, voter outreach, and other campaign activities.
“We’ve already hit our goal,” Foster told IdahoReporter.com.
Labrador said his campaign raised most of its money from inside Idaho and received donations from more than 1,100 individuals. Foster said more than 2,500 people have contributed to Minnick’s campaign in the past two years.
Complete data from the candidates’ campaigns should be available soon, thanks to federal campaign law.
It’s common for incumbent candidates, who spend much of their time in Congress in Washington, D.C., to raise more money than their challengers outside state borders. Campaign finance data through the end of June analyzed by the non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics showed that 54 percent of Minnick’s contributions came from outside Idaho, compared to 19 percent from Labrador. However, Minnick raised three times as much money in Idaho than Labrador.
The two Republican members of Congress representing Idaho up for re-election, Rep. Mike Simpson and Sen. Mike Crapo, both have a higher percentage of contributions from outside Idaho than Minnick, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.