Mallott raises most funds, but Parnell maintains biggest bank account
Democratic candidate for governor Byron Mallott was the top fundraiser this reporting period, but Republican incumbent Sean Parnell maintains the most money going into the general election.
Mallott has raised $297,000 since February, with $55,000 coming from the Alaska Democratic Party and another $50,000 coming from his own pocket. Parnell hauled in $286,000 in that same period, including a $100,000 contribution from the Alaska Republican Party. Independent candidate Bill Walker raised $259,000, with $170,000 of that self-financed.
While Mallott brought in the most money, he also spent the most. His campaign used $277,000 since November, and is left with just $55,000 in the black. The Parnell campaign has $447,000 going into November, while Walker has $116,000 left to spend between now and the general.
Mallott’s biggest single expense was a polling contract with the Mellman Group, a D.C.-based political consulting firm. Much of his campaign income has gone to staffing and office expenses, and little has gone toward advertising. The Mallott campaign put $7,000 toward signs and $545 on Facebook advertisements. The campaign issued a press release attributing the amount of cash on hand primarily to travel, but just 6 percent of expenditures went toward airfare, hotel, or car rental.
The Walker campaign spent slightly less than Mallott, using up $268,000 of their funds. Walker has put the bulk of his money toward advertising, spending $44,000 on TV ads on KTUU Channel 2 in Anchorage and another $15,000 in the Fairbanks and Juneau television markets. His campaign has also spent nearly $30,000 on campaign signs and $23,000 on Facebook advertising.
The Parnell campaign used up just $170,000 of its war chest, dividing up its expenses between staffing, polling, and social media advertising.
The other candidates in the governor’s race – Republican challenger and Tea Party activist Russ Millette, Republican Gerald Heikes, Constitution Party candidate J.R. Myers, Libertarian Care Clift, and Democrat Phil Stoddard – raised $15,000 combined.
Both Parnell and Mallott may see a slight – even substantial – financial boost once the lieutenant governor nominees are selected in the party primary.
Republican lieutenant governor candidate and Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan has $15,000 going into the primary. He faces a nominal challenge from Kenai Republican Kelly Wolf, who has raised $50. Once the Republican nominee is selected, his funds are effectively merged with the gubernatorial candidate.
In the Democratic primary race for lieutenant governor, State Sen. Hollis French has raised $62,000 and Mat-Su teacher and political newcomer Bob Williams has brought in $30,000 since February. Williams has spent most of his funds, while French has held onto the bulk of his money. French has $69,000 still left on hand, exceeding the amount held in Mallott’s account.