Contributions pour into the 1st Congressional District races, new campaign fundraising reports show.
WASHINGTON — The crowded, but shrinking, field of aspirants to fill the 1st Congressional District seat has yielded two front-runners when it comes to hauling in cash at the fastest clip — at least for now.
Democrats Darcy Burner and Suzan DelBene were the only ones among seven candidates whose latest reported fundraising totals cracked six figures, despite entering the race later than others.
Burner took in $128,000 between November and December, according to totals reported to the Federal Election Commission (FEC). DelBene, who joined the race only on Jan. 12, said she has raised $122,000 in three weeks.
None of the other remaining candidates reported raising more than $76,000 in their fourth-quarter FEC reports.
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Fundraising advantages likely will help further shake out the field in the race to succeed Rep. Jay Inslee, D-Bainbridge Island, who is running for governor.
The newly redrawn 1st District extends from the suburbs of Redmond and Kirkland north to the Canadian border, taking in most of rural Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties.
Already, three candidates dropped out in January, including Democrat Andrew Hughes, a tax attorney who had sunk $68,000 of his own money into his campaign.
Two Republicans also dropped out: business consultant James Watkins and Greg Anders, executive director of Heritage Flight Museum in Bellingham.
The sole Republican in the race now is John Koster, a Snohomish County Council member who lost a bid to unseat U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen, D-Lake Stevens, in the 2nd Congressional District in 2010.
Entrepreneur Darshan Rauniyar, a Democrat, raised the least amount of money in the fourth quarter, $30,000.
State Rep. Roger Goodman, a Democrat, had the second-lowest total with $47,000. Goodman also was the only candidate to receive any significant money from political-action committees (PACs). Goodman has taken $17,000 from PACs out of $209,000 he has raised to date. Among them was $5,000 from MPP Medical Marijuana PAC of Washington, D.C., and $2,000 from the American Council of Engineering Cos.
Despite their fundraising momentum, DelBene and Burner face several rivals who’ve been campaigning longer and have bigger cash stockpiles. Chief among them is Laura Ruderman, a former three-term Democratic state representative who has been running since June and reported $188,000 in cash at the end of December. Ruderman’s fourth-quarter haul of $76,000 was her smallest yet.
Three others — Koster, Rauniyar and Democratic State Sen. Steve Hobbs — also had more than $110,000 on hand, or money left after expenses. Burner reported having $89,000 in cash.
DelBene did not disclose how much money she has on hand.
Burner is a progressive activist who twice was defeated by Republican U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert in the 8th Congressional District seat. DelBene, who like Burner formerly worked at Microsoft, also unsuccessfully ran against Reichert in 2010.
DelBene recently quit as state revenue director. She has $98,000 left from her previous campaign, which her spokesman, Sandeep Kaushik, said she intends to transfer to finance her 1st District race.
Kyung Song: 202-662-7455