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Republicans Rutherford, Rauner lead money race, reports show

Dan Rutherford. File Photo

Dan Rutherford. File Photo

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Updated: February 17, 2014 8:51AM

With more than $1.37 million, state Treasurer Dan Rutherford has the most cash available in his campaign kitty, while competitor Bruce Rauner raised by far the most money in the four-way race for the GOP gubernatorial nomination.

Campaign reports filed by Wednesday’s deadline showed state Sen. Kirk Dillard of Hinsdale and state Sen. Bill Brady of Bloomington continuing to struggle to raise money in the last reporting period, which covered the final three months of 2013.

But whoever emerges victorious from the Republican primary will face serious financial muscle in the general election.

Incumbent Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn raised more than $1.88 million in the last quarter and has more than $4.5 million on hand, according to the report he filed Wednesday night.

“As we gear up for the 2014 campaign, these numbers reflect strong support for Governor Quinn’s re-election and his work to move Illinois forward,” Leslie Wertheimer, Quinn campaign media coordinator said.

Rauner, who has donated more than $2 million to his own campaign, has said he was the only candidate who could compete financially with Quinn.

The last quarter results show he outraised his opponents — but he also far outspent them.

Rauner reported spending more — $4.3 million — than the $4.1 million he raised in contributions. Rauner has spent millions of dollars in a TV and radio ad campaign that ramped up in December. He also spent tens of thousands of dollars on payroll, research and consulting, his reports show.

Still, his fund closed out the year with nearly $400,000 in the bank. His campaign said Rauner entered the race having little name recognition, and polling now shows he is leading his opponents.

Rutherford brought in $393,000 during the final three months of 2013. The more than $1.37 million in his political fund as of Dec. 31, leaves Rutherford as the only other candidate positioned to purchase some TV time before the March 18 primary.

Dillard reported a total of $328,695 between two of his committees — however, that included more than $94,000 that came from his running mate, state Rep. Jil Tracy of Quincy. He was left with a balance of $144,000. Brady, who won the GOP gubernatorial nomination in 2010, reported $73,000 in receipts and closed out the year with about $270,000 in his two campaign accounts.

Brady’s share was just one-fifth of Rutherford’s take.

“We have been outraised throughout this campaign, yet look at the polls —we’re still on top,” Brady spokesman Dan Egler said. “We’ve consistently been first or second, depending on the poll, because of our residual name recognition, solid base of informed voters that know Bill and the fact that we’re running a campaign that doesn’t spend money it doesn’t have.”

Meanwhile, Republican candidate for treasurer Tom Cross had shown more than $327,000 in receipts and $388,000 cash on hand in his campaign fund, and primary competitor Bob Grogan reported raising $9,749 last period, closing out his fund with a total of $21,087.

On the Democratic side, Treasurer candidate Mike Frerichs reported nearly $170,000 in receipts and closed with a balance of $833,000.

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