Gov. Mark Dayton has raised $250,000 so far for his re-election campaign, a start to the significant fundraising he says he will do to keep the governor's office.
Dayton, who voluntarily reports his fundraising on a quarterly basis, has said he will not self-finance his 2014 effort. The governor, an heir to the Dayton's department store fortune, poured about $3.9 million into his 2010 effort.
He raised $217,000 in the last three months, a hefty clip compared to what he raised in the first three months of the year, and has spent $115,000 so far this year, his campaign said. His campaign manager Katharine Tinucci said he gathered most of the checks in the last week in June.
Tinucci said he has $230,000 cash in the bank and not seeded his campaign coffers with his own money.
The haul is likely only a taste of what he will need to launch a strong re-election campaign. In 2010, when he was running for the first time, he spent $4.7 million to win. The governor this time around will have the power of incumbency to help him through. That's already paid off -- his campaign said he's just received endorsement from the Minnesota Building and Construction Trades Council. Before the 2010 primary, that nod went to Democrat Margaret Anderson Kelliher.
This time around four Republicans are already gunning for Dayton's job, including former House Speaker Kurt Zellers, state Sen. Dave Thompson, Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson and businessman Scott Honour. Honour, Johnson and Thompson will be making their first joint television appearance Friday's night on TPT's Almanac.
Unlike Dayton, who was technically five days late in filing if he were on a quarterly schedule, none of those four have voluntarily released quarterly finance reports. By law, candidates would not need to file reports until next year.
Because Dayton's reporting schedule is something new, there are few direct comparisons available in Minnesota. In fundraising reports representing all of 2009, the top tier gubernatorial candidates had raised between $100,000 and $640,000, with Dayton raising the most.
The full Dayton report for the last three months is not yet available.