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Finances, campaigning ramps up for primary

Posted: May 31, 2014 10:09 p.m.
Updated: May 31, 2014 10:09 p.m.
 

Santa Clarita Valley voters may want to make sure their doors are in good repair because chances are a politician or two may come knocking in the next few days.

With only days left on the months-long campaign trail to replace retiring Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, those running to represent the Santa Clarita Valley in Congress have pulled in big bucks, and are expending substantial effort, to get their messages out to voters.

Leading the pack in terms of fundraising is the man McKeon has endorsed to replace him: former state Sen. Tony Strickland.

The Republican pulled in $139,334 in net contributions in the latest filing period — which ran from April 1 to May 14 — according the Federal Election Commission.

All told, Strickland has pulled in a whopping $1,021,366.88 in net contributions in the election cycle to date, according to the latest FEC figures.

“I feel like we’re winning every aspect of the campaign,” Strickland said Friday. “From walking, our door-knocking, to even Facebook friends; I’m very competitive and want to make sure that we win every aspect of the campaign.”

Strickland said shoe-leather campaigning, along with other advertising efforts, will play a large role heading into the final few days before Tuesday’s primary.

“I’m going to be out walking door-to-door, meeting as many voters as possible,” Strickland said. “It’s all part of our get out the vote effort.”

While Strickland has, financially, far outpaced the other challengers in the race to take over for McKeon as the representative for the 25th Congressional District, he’s not the only one who has pulled in substantial funding ahead of Tuesday’s primary election.

Over the latest filing period, Democrat Lee Rogers reported $46,084.11 in net contributions, giving him $569,428.61 in the election cycle.

Rogers, who waged an unsuccessful congressional campaign against McKeon in 2012, said his campaign has surpassed its fundraising goals for the primary.

“We’ve already spent it on this election, and for the remaining days, I’m focused on our get out the vote efforts,” Rogers said.

Another candidate, state Sen. Steve Knight, R-Palmdale, reported $40,326 in net contributions in the filing period, giving him $151,111 in the election cycle.

“We’ve run a great campaign, and it’s been a lot of grassroots effort,” Knight said Friday. “And I think our grassroots campaign is working.”

Like the other candidates, Knight said this weekend will be spent on get out the vote efforts and voter interaction.

Saugus Republican Troy Castagna reported $15,025 in net contributions in the latest filing period, giving him $56,290 over the life of the campaign, according to the FEC.

His fundraising total is supplemented by $125,500 in personal loans he has made to his own campaign.

“Someone needs to stand up to career politicians and special interests and give the people an alternative, and that’s exactly what I’m doing,” he said Friday. “I’m putting my money where my mouth is.”

Voter interaction is also a major emphasis for Castagna heading into this final weekend.

“We’ve done everything we can do, and hopefully we’ll have good result on Tuesday,” he said.

Lancaster resident Evan Thomas, who is running as a Democrat, reported $2,387.92 in net contributions over the latest filing period, giving him $13,831.69 in the election cycle to date.

McKeon announced earlier this year that he plans to retire at the end of his current congressional term, leaving open a district that includes the Santa Clarita Valley, as well as portions of the Antelope and Simi valleys.

The other candidates — Stevenson Ranch Libertarian David Bruce, Michael Mussack, a no-party-preference candidate and Porter Ranch Republican Navraj Singh — are also running in the race to replace McKeon in Tuesday’s primary election. None of them had information for the recent period on file with the FEC as of Saturday.

Lmoney@signalscv.com
661-287-5525
On Twitter
@LukeMMoney

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