Democratic challenger Sal Pace matched Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Cortez, in fundraising this spring in what’s shaping up to be the state’s tightest congressional race.
Pace raised $413,400 for the April-June quarter, just shy of Tipton’s $416,113.
Tipton still has more money in the bank – $1,080,855 – but Pace was in the ballpark with $789,099.
Pace said he was pleased with his campaign’s momentum.
“The overwhelming support we’ve gotten shows we are in this to win in November, and people are ready to make a change in Washington,” he said in a news release.
Tipton’s campaign did not comment about the numbers.
Both national parties have the 3rd Congressional District race on their list of top targets. Outside groups and super PACs have not begun to spend big money yet in Western Colorado, but in previous close elections, millions of dollars were spent outside of the official campaigns.
Donations from individual Colorado residents made up the bulk of the haul for both campaigns. But the top donors this election cycle have been political action committees, which can make larger donations than individuals.
Senior House members on both sides of the aisle have the race on their radar. Tipton got $10,000 each from PACs associated with Speaker of the House John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor. Pace got $10,000 each from PACs belonging to top Democrats Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer.
Pace also got $10,000 donations each from unions for electrical workers, operating engineers and carpenters, plus $18,000 from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
Aside from political PACs, Tipton’s largest donors were the National Automotive Dealers Association at $10,000, Koch Industries’ PAC at $9,000, and PACs for Miller Coors and the National Rifle Association at $7,000 each.
Candidates report their fundraising quarterly. The next report is not due until the middle of October.
The PAC numbers in this story show donations through the entire election cycle, not just the last quarter.