Another sign of the disparity in fundraising between Gov. Rick Scott and U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson. Nelson announced Friday his campaign raised $4.4 million in the second quarter of this year. That’s the most Nelson has raised in a quarter since he was first elected to the Senate in 2001.
Nelson raised $3.2 million in the first quarter of this year.
Respectable. Until you consider the $10.7 million second quarter fundraising total announced by Scott earlier this week. That’s more than any other Senate candidate during a three-month reporting period this election cycle.
Nelson’s second quarter numbers now leaves the incumbent with $13.7 million on hand in a contest that is expected to be the most expensive Senate race in the nation this year. NBC News reported earlier this week that the two campaigns have already spent $26.2 million on advertising, and the general election is still four months away.
Nelson’s campaign played up the fact that the Democrat had 18,000 first-time contributors for the quarter, saying it reflects the grassroots support of Nelson’s campaign.
“This record-breaking quarter with nearly 20,000 new supporters proves Floridians know Bill Nelson fights for them every day to protect Medicare and Social Security and keep protections for those with preexisting conditions to ensure they have access to health care and working to protect Florida’s environment,” campaign manager Marley Wilkes told the Tampa Bay Times.
The Scott campaign says that its second quarter numbers are the result of donations from 8,000 contributors, 80 percent who live in Florida. More than 75 percent of those donors gave less than $500.