Assemblywoman Christy Smith and veteran Mike Garcia each led their parties in the funding race for California’s 25th Congressional District by raising $1.25 million altogether, according to the latest finance report.
The fourth-quarter figures, which cover what donors contributed between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, show approximately $2.51 million was raised, collectively, by the end of 2019 from all candidates vying to fill the seat of former Rep. Katie Hill, who resigned in October.
Of the 13 candidates who will appear on the ballot for the race, seven challengers did not have all of their financing totals available Thursday, including Anibal Valdez-Ortega, Robert Cooper, Getro Elize, Kenneth Jenks, David Lozano, Daniel Mercuri and Otis Lee Cooper.
Smith, D-Santa Clarita, raised the most during the three-month reporting period from the pool of both Democratic and GOP candidates with a total of $845,245, according to the recently released Federal Election Commission fundraising reports.
“Christy is proud to have raised the most money of any candidate in this race without taking a dime from corporations, corporate PACs, or lobbyists,” Kunal Atit, Smith’s deputy campaign manager, said via email Thursday. “This campaign is powered by working women and men from every corner of this district who know they can trust Christy to fight on their behalf and end the corruption in Washington.”
Smith, who launched her campaign a day after Hill’s resignation, had reached the $1 million mark after the Dec. 31 filing deadline, according to Atit.
Just behind was Cenk Uygur, founder of the progressive news and opinion channel “The Young Turks,” with a total of $796,412 raised in the fourth quarter.
On Sunday, he surpassed $1 million in fundraising, his campaign announced Thursday.
“The momentum of this campaign speaks for itself; reaching the $1 million threshold is an amazing accomplishment and truly indicative of the strength of our grassroots base,” Uygur said in a statement.
Garcia, a former Navy fighter pilot, raised $406,000 in the last quarter, making him the lead GOP fundraiser in the race.
With figures from the three-month period, Garcia, who started his campaign well before Hill’s resignation, reached a total of $889,000. He had also surged past the $1 million fundraising mark after the end of 2019, his campaign reported in late January.
“I’m humbled by the support we’ve received thus far,” said Garcia on Thursday. “More than tripling our nearest GOP opponent and being the first candidate in the race, and only Republican, to surpass $1 million raised helps us continue to spread our message of fighting to protect our district from the radical policies we’ve seen pushed by the left in D.C. and California.”
Republican candidates Steve Knight, the former 25th Congressional District representative who announced his bid for the seat in early November, raised a total of $122,165; and George Papadopolous, a former Donald Trump aide, raised $72,576, according to the FEC.