DENVER — Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper has a fundraising edge against Republican gubernatorial challenger Bob Beauprez in their first head-to-head month.
Hickenlooper's campaign said the governor raised about $353,000, while Beauprez's campaign reported about $261,000.
It's the first fundraising report since Beauprez became the Republican nominee on June 24. The reporting period covers June 26 to July 26.
Beauprez has $235,413 cash on hand. He spent most of the money he had raised previously on a four-way Republican primary.
Hickenlooper continues to have a big fundraising lead overall. He's raised about $3.4 million, and has $768,682 of it on hand.
The governor has made a handful of television ad buys for the fall for a total of $1.7 million. That matches the whole amount Hickenlooper spent on television advertising during his 2010 election, his campaign said, adding that they plan to continue buying air time before November.
Brad Komar, Hickenlooper's campaign manager, said in a statement that the fundraising support "from Coloradans across the state will enable us to share the positive work Governor Hickenlooper has accomplished over the last four years."
Despite the immediate fundraising disparity, the race has been competitive.
A Quinnipiac University poll released last month showed Hickenlooper trailing Beauprez among registered voters 43 to 44 percent, which is within the margin of error of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points.
"Coloradans from all four corners of the state are saying they are ready for stronger leadership, and their investment in our effort pulls us closer to that goal," Beauprez said in a statement.
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