Gov. Jay Nixon is building a big bank account for his re-election campaign while some of his potential Republican challengers have been sinking their own money into their advertising efforts.
Finance figures released Monday show Missouri's Democratic governor raised $2.1 million from April through June and had $7.6 million in his account at the start of July. Because Nixon faces no significant opposition in the Aug. 7 primary, he will be able to use most of that money for his general election campaign.
Nixon's campaign said it was his strongest fundraising quarter this election cycle and that his bank account is twice as large as it was at a similar point in July 2008. Nixon has yet to run ads for his re-election bid.
Suburban St. Louis businessman Dave Spence, one of several Republican gubernatorial candidates, plans to begin a new round of TV ads Wednesday, said campaign manager Jared Craighead.
Spence loaned his campaign an additional $500,000 during the past quarter, raising the total he has put into his own race to nearly $2.8 million. Spence, of suburban St. Louis, sold his manufacturing business, Alpha Packaging, to a private equity firm in 2010 and stepped down as president and CEO late last year to run for governor.
Another Republican gubernatorial candidate, Fred Sauer of suburban St. Louis, also has begun airing ads and posting billboards with some of his own money. A report filed with the Missouri Ethics Commission shows Sauer has loaned his campaign $218,000. Sauer founded Orion Investment Co. and also formed the Missouri Roundtable for Life, which opposed a 2006 ballot measure enacting a constitutional guarantee to conduct human embryonic stem cell research in Missouri.
Kansas City attorney Bill Randles loaned his Republican gubernatorial campaign an additional $11,758 this past quarter, raising his total in loans to more than $48,000. Randles has traveled the state extensively but has not been running advertisements.
The quarterly finance reports show Spence had nearly $1.2 million in his campaign account, Sauer had nearly $83,000 and Randles had less than $1,800 at the start of July.