Md. GOP gubernatorial hopefuls Craig and George fail to qualify for public funding match


Maryland Republican gubernatorial candidates David R. Craig, from left, Ronald A. George, Larry Hogan and Charles Lollar wait for a Republican gubernatorial primary debate to begin on Monday. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Two Maryland Republican gubernatorial candidates who sought to participate in the state’s public financing system this year have failed to raise enough money to qualify, according to election officials.

Neither Harford County Executive David R. Craig nor Del. Ronald A. George (Anne Arundel) will be eligible for matching funds in advance of the June 24 primary, elections officials said Tuesday.

Candidates seeking to participate in the system faced a deadline of Monday at midnight to raise about $260,000 in “seed money” from individual donors in increments of $250 or less.

If gubernatorial candidates meet that threshold, they are eligible for state matching funds if they agree to limit overall spending on the primary to roughly $2.6 million or less.

One Democratic candidate, Del. Heather R. Mizeur (Montgomery), and one Republican candidate, Anne Arundel businessman Larry Hogan, have met the threshold.

Election officials said Mizeur has qualified for roughly $460,000 in matching funds to date while Hogan is due to receive about $275,000 in coming days.

Neither of the two leading Democrats, Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown and Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler, are participating in the public financing system. As of May 20, Brown reported having $4.15 million in the bank while Gansler reported having $3.11 million. Mizeur, with her matching funds, had about $1 million available to spend.

Fundraising on the Republican side has been far more modest.

As of May 20, Hogan reported having nearly $390,000 in the bank, not including the $275,000 in anticipated matching money.

Craig reported having $144,058, while George having about $40,000.

A fourth Republican candidate, Charles County businessman Charles Lollar, did not opt to participate in the public financing system. As of May 20, he reported having about $18,000 in the bank.

John Wagner has covered Maryland government and politics for The Post since 2004.
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