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Fundraising range wide in gubernatorial race 

click to enlarge PHOTO COURTESY OF KRISTOPHER WILSON COURTESY OF FLICKR CREATIVE COMMONS
  • Photo courtesy of Kristopher Wilson courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

By Olivia Ober

Republican gubernatorial hopeful Mike Pence raised significantly more money during the second quarter of 2012 than did his opponent, Democrat John Gregg, and has more cash available to spend, according to reports filed Monday by the campaigns.

Libertarian Rupert Boneham trailed far behind the major party candidates in fundraising.

Pence reported to the Indiana Election Division that he raised slightly more than $3 million from April 1 through June 30 and had more than $5.5 million in cash to spend with the general election more than four months away.

Gregg raised nearly $1.8 million during the same period. The campaign reported it had $2.9 million in cash on hand.

In all, Pence has raised more than $9.85 million since he launched his campaign last year.

"Mike Pence will continue to take his vision for making Indiana the state that works to Hoosiers through grassroots meetings, policy announcements and television," his campaign manager Kyle Robertson said.

The Pence campaign reported it has had 7,740 donors. Three in four contributions came from Indiana residents, the campaign said.

"Hoosiers from all four corners of the state are responding to our positive, issues-based campaign," Robertson said. "We are honored to have their continued support."

The Gregg campaign reports a median contribution of $100 to the campaign and said 97 percent of its donations came from Hoosiers.

"I am honored and humbled by the support the people of Indiana have shown me," Gregg said. "This campaign has been about bringing Hoosiers together to focus on creating jobs and improving the economy. Today's report shows that message is resonating throughout Indiana."

Jeff Harris, spokesman for the Indiana AFL-CIO, said he does not see a large gap in the fundraising numbers and believes affiliates of the AFL-CIO have been "very supportive" of the Gregg campaign's volunteer and fundraising efforts.

"Congressman Pence has been able to accumulate a lot of support from out of state," Harris said, "and John Gregg has been able to match that very closely with support of Hoosier working men and women. This is a close race and the finances show it."

Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Rupert Boneham raised just short of $17,000 during the second quarter.

Boneham's fundraising total reached a little more than $47,000, according to Boneham's campaign manager, Evan McMahon. The campaign had just over $2,000 on hand, he said.

McMahon said the majority of Boneham's campaign funding has come from the sale of campaign t-shirts to Hoosiers.

Despite trailing the Democrat and Republican candidates for governor, Boneham's total is more than a Libertarian candidate has ever raised in Indiana, McMahon said. And he said the Boneham campaign is running a campaign "for a lot less money and a lot more heart."

"We're not going to have TV ads, and we're probably not going to have big billboards, but Rupert is going to meet people one on one and shake their hand," McMahon said.

Everyone involved in Boneham's campaign is a volunteer who is working without pay and the group is traveling Indiana in an RV to meet with Hoosiers, especially in small towns.

"It's not about who can buy the best TV ads, it's about who can make the most personal and honest connections with Hoosiers and who can relate more," McMahon said. "I think Rupert is proving he is that candidate."

Olivia Ober is a reporter for The Statehouse File, a news service powered by Franklin College journalism students and faculty.

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