Money pours into Arizona secretary of state race after 2020 ballot review

By Mary Jo Pitzl | Arizona Republic

Candidates for Arizona secretary of state raised $2.2 million in 2021, reflecting the keen interest in election issues following the narrow margin of victory in the U.S. presidential contest and the ensuing ballot review of Maricopa County’s results.

The cumulative fundraising is more than triple the amount candidates raised at this point in the campaign four years ago, according to reports filed with the Secretary of State’s Office.

Leading all candidates was advertising executive Edward “Beau” Lane, who posted just over a $716,000 haul since quietly entering the race for the Republican nomination in late June. Lane drew four-figure contributions from a number of business owners and CEOs. His report showed more contributions coming in at the maximum $5,300 limit allowed by law than any other campaign.

Lane was followed closely by Rep. Mark Finchem, R-Oro Valley. He raised about $663,000 since launching his campaign last spring on a wave of false claims that the 2020 election was stolen. Many of the contributions came from small-dollar donors and many from out of state — perhaps due to an endorsement from former President Donald Trump in September.

 

Democratic contenders Adrian Fontes and state Rep. Reginald Bolding each raised more than the other two Republican candidates: Sen. Michelle Ugenti-Rita, R-Scottsdale, and Rep. Shawnna Bolick, R-Phoenix.

Fontes, the former Maricopa County Recorder who helped run the 2020 presidential election, raised about 385,000 in 2021. Bolding raised just under $199,000.

Ugenti-Rita collected about $94,000 and Bolick just shy of $157,000, reports filed over the weekend show.

Current Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, a Democrat, is not seeking reelection. Instead, she is running for the Democratic nomination for governor.

Expect record amounts in campaign fundraising 

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