Harford County Executive David R. Craig, who has been touted as a leading Republican candidate for governor, has less than $183,000 available for his campaign after a year in which he and his running mate spent more than they raised.
Craig said in a report filed with the State Board of Elections that he had $154,577 in the bank, while his running mate, Del. Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio (R-Talbot), reported having $28,046 in a separate account.
Meanwhile, two other Republican hopefuls, Del. Ronald A. George and Charles County businessman Charles Lollar, finished the year with little money, according to reports filed Wednesday.
George (R-Anne Arundel) reported cash on hand of only about $15,000, while Lollar reported less than $6,000 in the bank.
The two leading Democratic candidates, by contrast, are both expected to report having more than $6 million available, including funds collected by their running mates. Reports are due to the Maryland State Board of Elections by midnight Wednesday.
Craig reported raising nearly $250,000 in the year than ended Jan. 8. That was slightly more than during the previous year. But his campaign committee spent nearly $296,000 during the same period, much of it on consultants and staff and on costs associated with fundraising and other receptions.
Haddaway-Riccio, who joined Craig’s ticket in July as his lieutenant governor candidate, reported raising $24,643 over the course of the year. She spent $8,238.
Jim Pettit, a spokesman for the Craig campaign, said the ticket plans to put a greater emphasis on up fundraising in early April, after the conclusion of this year’s session of the General Assembly.
“The emphasis of the campaign, thus far, has been seeing people where they live and work and getting seen across the state,” Pettit said. “The cash on hand enables David Craig and Jeannie Haddaway to continue advances in grass-roots campaigning through the winter and spring. Meanwhile, the campaign is increasing its contacts, building out its donor base and will ramp up fundraising on April 7.”
George, meanwhile, reported raising more than $130,000 over the past year. But he spent more than $147,000 during the same period. He stayed in the black only with the benefit of some cash he had tucked away before announcing as a candidate in June.
George said in an interview that his bank account could have somewhat more than $15,000 because of computer glitches that affected his filing.
“That may not sound like a lot of money, but we have good things in place now,” George said. He said he is close to naming a running mate and that he anticipates an uptick in fundraising afterward.
Lollar reported raising about $65,000 since launching his campaign last year but said he had spent nearly $60,000 of that.
Larry Hogan, leader of the group Change Maryland, plans to join the race next week. He will not have to file a campaign finance report for the past year.
Democrats running for governor include Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler, Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown and Del. Heather R. Mizeur (D-Montgomery). Mizeur is participating in the public financing system and is expected to report having raised significantly less than her rivals.