CT governor’s race is most expensive in state history

Governor Ned Lamont and his Republican challenger Bob Stefanowksi have spent more than $30 million so far this election cycle, making this year’s race the most expensive campaign for governor in history. from Connecticut.

The record pace of spending was largely spurred by the Lamont publicity blitz in October, which the governor funded almost exclusively out of his own pockets.

According to reports filed Tuesday with state election officials, Lamont wrote two checks for his campaign totaling $7.5 million in October, bringing the total amount the Greenwich Democrat spent on his re-election bid to $22 million. dollars.

By comparison, the Madison Republican spent $3 million in October, for a total of just over $12 million spent on his second gubernatorial bid.

Stefanowski lent himself an additional $2 million in the last month before Election Day, according to his latest campaign finance report filed Tuesday – but his spending fell short of Lamont’s vast resources .

During the campaign, Stefanowski targeted the governor on his wealth, which was also a campaign issue during their 2018 game, accusing Lamont of being out of touch with the struggles of Connecticut residents. While not as wealthy as Lamont, Stefanowski’s earnings have also come under political attack announcements this election season, with Democrats demanding he release a list of clients who helped him win. an average of $12 million over the past three years.

In total, Stefanowski has loaned his campaign $12 million. He kicked off his campaign in January with a $10 million personal loan, then loaned his campaign an additional $2 million on Oct. 14.

By lending his campaign money, Stefanowski is able to recover unused funds at the end of the campaign or solicit contributions to reimburse some of his expenses. In contrast, Lamont is unable to recoup the millions he paid directly to his campaign.

Both men chose to self-fund their campaigns rather than participate in the state’s Citizens’ Election Program, which offers state grants to candidates who meet certain thresholds.

While Lamont’s spending has already broken records, his latest reports show he is likely to add to his sizable total.

The governor spent more than $5.2 million on digital and TV ads in October, nearly the amount he spent on ads in the previous three months combined. Stefanowski spent nearly $3 million on TV, radio and digital ads in October and continued to spend tens of thousands of dollars on consultants.

With Election Day a week away, Lamont had $760,391 in his campaign account, which is about a large ad buy, while Stefanowksi had $1.35 million on hand.

Longtime Independent Party candidate Rob Hotaling spent less than $15,000 in October and had around $3,900 on hand before the final week of campaigning. Hotaling received more than $8,200 in individual contributions in October.

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