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.