HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Gov. Neil Abercrombie has raised $4.3 million in his re-election campaign, 13 and a half times as much as his Democratic challenger in the primary, State Sen. David Ige, and more than all of his potential opponents combined.
Ige’s campaign released preliminary numbers showing he raised $321,938 this election season so far, a fraction of Abercrombie’s $4.3 million.
The most significant campaign spending reports before the Aug. 9 primary were due at midnight Thursday. They cover campaign finance activity from Jan. 1 to June 30 of this year.
Abercrombie has spent most of the money he's raised -- $3.7 million so far -- while Ige reported $297,636 in expenditures.
Abercrombie reported he has just $1 million in campaign cash, compared to Ige's $82,003.
"Remember we have some polls showing Ige doing very, very well, despite the fact he obviously is raising a lot less money,” said John Hart, Hawaii Pacific University Communication Department chair and a political analyst. “This is a primary. This is hard-core voters. They may be a little harder to change by an ad campaign."
"Just because you have a fundraising advantage over your opponent doesn't automatically translate into a victory," Hart said.
Abercrombie’s fundraising slowed this year, with his campaign reporting he raised $885,600 in the first six months of 2014, compared to his overall total of $4.3 million.
Republican candidate for governor Duke Aiona and independent gubernatorial candidate Mufi Hannemann have also raised a fraction of the money Abercrombie brought in.
Aiona reported receiving $370,968 so far, twice as much as Hannemann's $178,717 raised.
Aiona has spent $294,602, more than ten times as much as Hannemann, who reported expenses of $27,158.
Aiona had a cash surplus of $203,488, while Hannemann had $84,764 in the bank.
"I really question at this point if the amount of money Duke has raised and the amount of money Mufi has raised is enough money to run an effective gubernatorial general election campaign," Hart said, noting they don’t have enough money to mount a statewide campaign.
"You can't go door-to-door on all the islands, you need media, you need outreach, you need paid workers, you need to do polling. All of this costs money," Hart said.
The leading Democrats running for lieutenant governor -- incumbent Shan Tsutsui and challenger State Sen. Clayton Hee are locked in a close fundraising fight.
Hee has almost as much money left as his opponent.
Hee reported raising $580,048 compared to Tsutsui's fundraising total of $685,199.
Tsutsui has spent $424,064, more than Hee's $259,859.
And while Hee has a $320,189 cash surplus, Tsutsui has $357,787, leading Hee by about $37,000.
In the Republican race for lieutenant governor, Elwin Ahu has a strong fundraising lead over Warner “Kimo” Sutton.
Ahu reported raising $69,551 so far to date, and spending $44,489. Ahu said he had $25,062 on hand as of June 30.
Sutton has raised $16,736, most of that from $14,736 in loans from himself.
Sutton spent $15,986 and reports a deficit of $13,986.
There are two more deadlines for state and county candidates to disclose their campaign finances before the Aug. 9 primary election. One June 30, they will file reports covering July 1- 25 and Aug. 6 candidates will be required to release campaign figures for July 26 through Aug. 5.