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Gallego posts $7.5 million haul in Arizona Senate race

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Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) raised $7.5 million for his Arizona Senate bid during the first three months of 2024, putting him on strong financial footing ahead of what will likely be a general election battle against Republican Kari Lake.

Gallego’s total more than doubles the $3.3 million he raised in the final three months of 2023. He also reported $9.6 million in cash on hand with seven months to go until Election Day.

The contours of the Arizona race became increasingly clear early last month when Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I) announced she would not seek a second term, setting up the likely Gallego versus Lake match-up.

The congressman’s fundraising prowess is likely to give him a leg up on the airwaves, unless Lake vastly boosts her total as well. The former TV anchor and gubernatorial hopeful raised $2.1 million in the fourth fundraising quarter of 2023, though she could see a boost from Republicans who had stayed on the sidelines while Sinema was in the race.

Gallego’s team also reported that 98 percent of the contributions were $200 or less, with 100,000 individuals giving to his campaign last cycle — 50 percent of which were first-time givers to the congressman. He has raised more than $20 million this cycle overall.

“Thanks to the support of hundreds of thousands of small-dollar donors who have chipped in what they could to help elect Ruben Gallego, we are building the infrastructure to win this November,” Nichole Johnson, Gallego’s campaign manager, said in a statement. “Arizonans are ready to elect a Senator who will defend abortion rights, cut costs for families, and take care of our veterans — and that’s exactly what Ruben will do.”

Gallego is among the first Senate candidates to unveil their first-quarter fundraising totals. Full reports for the first three months of the year are due April 15. Lake has not released her first-quarter figure yet.

Top outside groups could help Lake make up the gap in spending on the race, though their dollars don’t go as far as a candidate’s when it comes to booking television advertising.

Gallego announced his first TV ad early last month and has been on the air in an attempt to define himself to a statewide electorate. Lake has not yet been running television ads.