Indiana campaign documents reveal party and caucus priorities – Indianapolis Business Journal


The latest campaign materials leaked last week, showing which races and candidates are having the most fundraising success as well as which senators and state representatives are struggling to attract voters.

Republican nominee for Secretary of State Diego Morales weathered several controversies during his campaign but still emerged from the third quarter of fundraising with nearly $482,000 in cash, raising just under $311. $000. A notable expense was $377 for an inflatable bounce house at a fundraiser in July.

His Democratic opponent, Destiny Scott Wells, slightly outperformed Morales in fundraising, raising more than $328,000 during that span. His campaign reported having $299,000 in cash at the end of the quarter.

But Wells’ campaign owes the candidate a small debt — the remaining $5,547 of January expenses that Wells herself paid when launching the campaign.

The Indiana Republican Party raised $3.1 million and ended the period with $256,922 in cash, compared to the Democrats’ $1.8 million and $507,655.

home expenses

The House Republican Campaign Committee, or HRCC, has contributed to dozens of campaigns across the state, but several candidates have garnered significantly more than others.

The HRCC’s largest sum of money went to Julie McGuire, who received more than $532,000 in her bid for District 93.

McGuire defeated former Rep. John Jacob in the Republican primary in May and most of the HRCC’s contributions to him predate the last filing. But between April and October, the period covered by this report, McGuire received $42,500.

Other recipients include incumbent Julie Olthoff of northwest Indiana, who received a meager $5,000 in August followed by $100,000 in late September for a total of $105,000.

Other recipients, including Rep. Dale DeVon of Granger, have received all of their funding in recent months. DeVon received $40,000 in late September and another $50,000 in mid-October.

The HRCC has also given big to candidates challenging incumbent Democrats, as seen in Kyle Pierce’s race. Pierce challenges Anderson Rep. Terri Austin and received $95,000 from the HRCC in two separate installments: $10,000 in August and $85,000 in September.

For some recipients, the April-October period covered by the report reflected last-minute cash injections for candidates ahead of the May primary.

Rep. Craig Snow and Rep. Curt Nisly were redistributed to the same district after the redistricting, with Snow getting the go-ahead from management and receiving $165,000 from the HRCC, including $80,000 in early April. Snow won the primary and is likely to win his seat in northern Indiana.

But not all big-dollar recipients will return to the Statehouse in January. Rep. Dan Leonard lost his Northeast seat in May’s Republican primary to right-wing candidate Lorissa Sweet. Leonard received a total of $175,000 from the HRCC, including a late April contribution of $60,000 just before the primary.

The HRCC ended the six-month deposit period with $2,178,915 in cash.

The Indiana House Democratic Caucus made just two candidate contributions in the latest report: $11,000 to Indianapolis Rep. Mitch Gore and $10,000 to Jeffersonville Rep. Rita Fleming. The committee has $624,162 in cash.

Big spending in the Senate

On the Senate side, the Senate Majority Campaign Committee, or SMCC, funded polls in six districts across the state, including Senate Districts 1, 4, 11, 26, 29 and 31.

Senate District 31, currently held by beleaguered Republican Kyle Walker, is one of the most high-profile Senate races for Hoosiers and will likely be one of the closest elections come November.

Walker faces a challenge from Democrat Jocelyn Vare, a former city councilman from Fishers, Indiana’s Central District. The SMCC gave nearly $400,000 to its election committee, far more than any other candidate, and canvassed its district twice with two different companies.

Senate District 26, a new Muncie district formed during the redistricting without an incumbent, pits Democrat Melanie Wright, a former state Representative, against Republican Scott Alexander, Delaware County Commissioner. The SMCC funded two rounds of surveys in this district, both from the New York-based firm Mclaughlin & Associates.

Districts 1 and 4, both located in northwest Indiana, have Democratic incumbents facing Republican challengers: incumbent Michael W. Griffin versus Daniel E. Dernulc; and Rodney Pol, Jr., the starter, against Jeff Larson.

The last Democratic district surveyed by the SMCC – District 29 – is held by Sen. JD Ford who faces a challenge from Republican Alex Choi.

SMCC also funded an investigation into District 11, led by Republican Senator Linda Rogers, whose district borders the Michigan border near Granger. She faces Melinda (Mindy) Fountain, a Democrat.

The Republican committee ended the quarter with $966,762 in cash while its Democratic counterparts, which did not directly fund state Senate candidates, finished with $104,221.


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