Pa. Dem gov hopeful Wolf says he's raised $2.9M
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) -- Tom Wolf's gubernatorial campaign said Wednesday it has raised $2.9 million in addition to the $10 million the businessman plans to spend in the primary race, raising eyebrows but prompting no similar disclosures by his poker-faced Democratic competitors.
"Throughout Pennsylvania, people are hungry for a different type of leader with fresh ideas," said Wolf's campaign Manager, Joe Shafer. "Tom Wolf has worked hard to reach out to Pennsylvanians throughout the commonwealth, and his message is resonating."
None of the five other campaigns reached Wednesday was willing to divulge fundraising numbers so early in the process.
"The year ain't over yet," said Mark Nevins, a spokesman for Rob McCord, the state treasurer who was elected to a second four-year term last year. "Why is he in such a rush?"
The campaign spokesman for U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz, who lined her gubernatorial campaign account with more than $3 million transferred from political committees that helped elect her to Congress and the state Senate, played down expectations of a large fundraising total.
"We fully expect to be outspent in this race by candidates like Tom Wolf and Rob McCord, who we expect to self-fund to the tune of millions of dollars," said spokesman Mark Bergman.
Schwartz was anticipating a campaign boost at a Wednesday night fundraiser in Philadelphia, where Local 98 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers planned to endorse her and present her campaign with a $100,000 check.
Wolf's campaign said it raised $2.86 million between April and Wednesday - nearly three weeks before the year-end cutoff for contributions that will be included in the 2013 campaign finance reports candidates must file by Jan. 31. The campaign declined to identify contributors or to provide the total number who gave.
The January reports will provide the first detailed look at how much money the candidates raised and spent - information that is usually closely guarded at least until the end of the year - and are early indicators of their comparative strength. The reports are the first in a series of six such reports that the candidates must file leading up to the Nov. 4 general election.
Wolf released his fundraising total just before a weekend of political festivities surrounding the annual Pennsylvania Society dinner in New York City. Last week, Wolf announced that he and his wife plan to attend the events but wouldn't host a reception. They say they instead will contribute $5,000 apiece to food banks in Philadelphia, Harrisburg and Pittsburgh.
Wolf, who runs a York-based business that has been in his family for generations and formerly served briefly as state revenue secretary, said when he announced his candidacy that he was prepared to sink at least $10 million of his money into the primary campaign.
John Hanger, a former state utility regulator and former secretary of the state Department of Environmental Protection, declined to discuss his fundraising, as did spokesmen for former DEP Secretary Katie McGinty and Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski.
Calls seeking comment from the other candidates - Pentecostal minister Max Myers and Lebanon County Commissioner Jo Ellen Litz - were not immediately returned.