AP Political Writer
RICHMOND, Va. - Without a Democratic rival for the Senate nomination, former Gov. Tim Kaine has expanded his fundraising advantage over Republican George Allen, the frontrunner in the four-way GOP primary.
Reports filed with the Federal Election Commission show Allen raised nearly $751,000 but spent about $640,000 from April 1 through May 23. That brings his total to date to about $6.8 million with about $2.7 million in the bank ahead of the June 12 primary.
The FEC had not posted Kaine's totals by midday, but he said in a news release he raised about $1.2 million through May 23, taking his total raised so far to $8.6 million. Kaine did not disclose in his release how much his campaign had spent over the period.
That left him with about $2.5 million on hand _ about the same amount of television ad time he says he's reserved for the fall campaign.
The only other Senate candidate whose most recent pre-primary filing appeared on the FEC website Thursday afternoon was Republican Jamie Radtke. The Virginia tea party leader reported $61,000 raised and nearly $92,400 spent during the period, leaving her with slightly less than $50,000 for the final two weeks of the primary race.
Other Republicans who will appear on the primary ballot include Del. Robert G. Marshall of Prince William County and Chesapeake minister E.W. Jackson.
The nearly $1.8 million fundraising disadvantage Allen's candidate committee has against Kaine's, is hardly insurmountable or much reason for concern.
Allen and the GOP field have already received substantial help pounding Kaine in television advertising from the conservative independent groups, including Crossroads GPS _ founded in part by former President George W. Bush's political media adviser Karl Rove.
Kaine will have outside, independent organizations on his side, too, but they've remained silent so far.
By election day, televised attacks from these murky independent advocacy organizations funded by undisclosed wealthy individuals and corporations could rival or perhaps surpass advertising underwritten by traditional candidate organizations and their allied political parties.
Search federal campaign finance reports: http://1.usa.gov/dfIMtA
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