By Chris Kahn
The Associated Press
Wednesday, June 20, 2007; 9:22 PM
GILBERT, Ariz. -- Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has topped $1 million in contributions in Arizona, the home state of presidential rival John McCain, Romney campaign officials said Wednesday.
Sen. McCain's campaign spokesman Danny Diaz dismissed the announcement by the Romney campaign, saying McCain has raised more than twice that amount in Arizona.
"We've also done well raising money in Massachusetts," Diaz said. "Senator McCain has been elected and re-elected in Arizona time and time again."
Romney is expected to add another $175,000 after speaking to 250 supporters at a fundraiser Wednesday night in Gilbert, a rapidly growing town east of Phoenix.
Romney called McCain a "terrific senator and American hero" but he differed with McCain on a number of key issues.
"My expectation is that I'll see him in a number of debates but when it is all said and done, I'll win the prize," Romney said.
Jason Rose, state director of Romney's campaign in Arizona, said McCain's support for an immigration reform bill has been tough for some Arizona Republicans to stomach. The bill combines tougher border security with an eventual path to citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants.
Romney has said the immigration reform measure "falls short of a workable solution to an important problem."
On the Net:
Romney campaign site _ http://www.mittromney.com
McCain campaign site _ http://www.johnmccain.com