Republican Asa Hutchinson reports $420K raised in August; Democrat Mike Ross reports $370K


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LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — Republican gubernatorial hopeful Asa Hutchinson on Monday reported outpacing Democratic rival Mike Ross in fundraising last month, bringing in more than $420,000 as the two head into the final seven weeks of their fight for Arkansas' top office.

Hutchinson reported raising $420,519 in August, besting the $370,197 Ross reported raising the same month. Monday was the deadline for state candidates to file their monthly fundraising reports.

Hutchinson reported ending the month with $667,010 in the bank, compared to $307,537 Ross reported having on hand. Ross has raised more than $5.6 million since launching his bid last year, while Hutchinson has raised more than $3.4 million total.

Both campaigns said they believed they were well positioned for the final weeks of the race.

"We are grateful, but not at all surprised by the support shown from Asa's supporters and volunteers, who have been more than generous with both their money and their time throughout this campaign," Hutchinson campaign manager Jon Gilmore said in a statement.

Dustin Smith, Ross' deputy campaign manager for finance said in a statement that the Democratic nominee's report "demonstrates that voters are responding to Mike's positive vision for Arkansas's future and that Mike Ross has the momentum, resources and support to win on Election Day."

Ross and Hutchinson are fellow ex-congressmen and are running to succeed Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe, who is barred by term limits from seeking re-election this fall.

Both rivals reported spending more than they raised during the month. Hutchinson spent $582,482, with more than $403,000 of that going toward reserving airtime for television ads for the final weeks of the campaign. Ross spent $406,320, and nearly $146,000 of that was for TV advertising.

The Arkansas governor's race is one of the most closely watched in the nation, with Republicans hoping to win the office after recent gains in the state. The GOP won control of the state Legislature for the first time since Reconstruction in the 2012 election.

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