Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom may not have the race for California governor secured, but new finance reports show he’s all but locked up the race for most money raised.
Newsom, a Democrat and former San Francisco mayor, raised $4.6 million from Jan. 1 through April 21 of this year. That gave him $20.6 million in cash on hand, far beyond any of his competitors.
Sherry Bebitch Jeffee, a professor of public policy at USC, said money alone won’t win the race for Newsom, who has consistently been ahead both in the polls and in fundraising.
“Ask Meg Whitman, who spent something like $118 million of her own money against Jerry Brown for governor,” Jeffe said of the Republican who lost to Brown in 2014. “It’s demography, it’s constituency, it’s money, it’s media, it’s message.”
Here’s a look at the money raised by other candidates during this period and their cash on hand:
- Treasurer John Chiang: $4.4 million raised (including a $3.1 million transfer from one of Chiang’s old campaign accounts); $7.9 million cash on hand.
- Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa: $2.4 million raised; $7.1 million cash on hand.
- San Diego businessman John Cox: $1.6 million raised (including $1.1 million from Cox himself); $1.2 million cash on hand.
- Orange County Assemblyman Travis Allen: $683,000 raised; $148,000 cash on hand.
- Former State Superintendent of Public Instruction Delaine Eastin: $226,000 raised; $141,000 cash on hand.
Aside from Newsom, the other major financial player in the race is an independent expenditure group run by a charter schools association. It has raised more than $12 million in recent weeks to support Villaraigosa, a charter school backer. The group paid for a statewide TV advertisement for Villaraigosa, a spot that was fact-checked by PolitiFact California.
Vote by mail ballots for the June primary go out on May 7.
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