Republican challenger Tom Smith won the 3rd quarter fundraising battle with Sen. Bob Casey, $1.643 million to $1.517 million. That comes on top of $10 million that Smith loaned his campaign in the same period.
Smith’s campaign says it had $7 million cash on hand as of the Sept. 30 deadline compared to the Casey campaign’s $5.21 million.
Both campaigns have spent heavily since the end of September, with Casey largely holding his TV advertising until then. Since Oct. 1, both candidates have likely already spent at least half of the cash on hand they reported today. Unfortunately for Casey, while he must fundraise via traditional means, Smith can reload his coffers simply by writing a check.
“This latest news spells more trouble for Senator Casey who continues to lose support to Tom Smith,” said Smith Campaign Manager Jim Conroy. ”That an incumbent career politician who has taken in millions from special interest PACs was outraised, is even further evidence that Casey’s message is falling on deaf ears, record is severely lacking and support is crumbling.”
Smith’s campaign boasted that 96 percent of its contributions were $200 or less and 82 percent of individual contributions came from Pa.
It’s the first time that Smith has taken in more in contributions – excluding loans – than Casey this cycle.
Polling has shown the race growing consistently closer over the past few weeks, due in large part to Smith’s dominance on the airwaves.
Overall Smith, a former coal company owner, has loaned or in-kinded his campaign roughly $17 million.
Casey’s Campaign Manager Larry Smar said the amount can’t hide Smith’s record.
“With $17 million in personal money, Tom Smith is almost entirely bankrolling his campaign by himself and with the help of national Tea Party groups. His millions can buy attack ads, but it can’t cover up his radical Tea Party agenda,” Smar said.