Wednesday, April 21, 2004

5th District Cash Run

According to the Winston-Salem Journal, the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington nonpartisan organization that analyzes campaign contributions, has ranked the 5th District Republican race to replace Rep. Dick Burr as the most expensive congressional race nationwide, in both money raised and money spent. That's a statistic that takes in a fair amount of real estate, not to mention a whole lotta bat skins!

Jack Fleer, a professor emeritus of political science at Wake Forest University, said, "This is essentially a one-party district. So you wonder why it takes so much."

Well, when you're pointing out how relatively less close to the Supreme Being your opponents are, as opposed to your own sweet self, that costs a lot of money. Can't just wait for God Himself to whisper the name "Vernon Robinson" into the ear of every last Republican primary voter, though we're sure He'd get around to it eventually.

The actual dollar amounts raised: Three of the Republican candidates -- Vernon Robinson, Jay Helvey and Ed Broyhill -- have raised more than $1 million each.

Robinson, a member of the Winston-Salem City Council, remained in the fund-raising lead after first-quarter reports were filed with the Federal Election Commission last week. Robinson raised $442,287 in the first quarter, giving him a total of $1.6 million.

Helvey, a former managing director of J.P. Morgan, raised $186,339 in the first quarter for a total of $1.1 million total. Broyhill, a Winston-Salem businessman, raised $416,999 in the first quarter, also for a total of $1.1 million.

Helvey's total includes $338,250 in personal loans and contributions; Broyhill's total includes $651,500 in personal loans and contributions.

Among other Republicans, Nathan Tabor, a vice president at Revival Soy in Kernersville, raised $501,487 total, including $273,133 in personal loans and contributions. N.C. Sen. Virginia Foxx of Banner Elk has raised $427,631, including $50,000 in personal contributions.

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