Democratic gubernatorial nominee Joy Hofmeister may have allies spending a lot of money on her behalf, but fundraising for her own campaign has been considerably more modest, according to a report filed Monday night with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission.
Hofmeister reported contributions of a little over $1.5 million during the Aug. 9-Oct. 24 reporting period, bringing her total for the entire election cycle to $3.1 million.
By comparison, Republican incumbent Kevin Stitt raised $2.3 million during the reporting period and is at $8.5 million for the cycle, according to his preelection report, filed Monday afternoon.
Stitt’s and Hofmeister’s totals include contributions received after the end of the reporting period but not the nearly $2 million Stitt has loaned his campaign.
They also don’t reflect more than $10.3 million in independent expenditures on Hofmeister’s behalf or $1.7 million on Stitt’s.
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Since Aug. 24, independent expenditures on Oklahoma races have totaled at least $14 million, most of which cannot be traced to original sources. State and federal laws prohibit coordination between independent expenditures and candidate campaigns.
Although Stitt raised about 50% more during the most recent reporting period, Hofmeister’s report was about twice as long. That seems to reflect the kinds of donors supporting them.
Stitt’s donor list draws heavily on oil and gas, construction and financial sectors — and in large amounts.
Hofmeister has fewer maximum donors and received more contributions of $100 or less, often as multiple installments from the same donors.
Many of those have education backgrounds, but it would be a mistake to think all or even most of Hofmeister’s money is coming from educators who are upset about Stitt’s plans for public schools. Her biggest donors have tended to be tribal governments and officials, lawyers, medical professionals and energy executives.
Of the $2.3 million received by Stitt during the last reporting period, about $145,000 came from political action committees.
Among those are PACs representing Continental Resources, Deloitte, Devon Energy, GlobalHealth, Enbridge Energy, the Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association, the Oklahoma Realtors Association, Tyson Foods and Farm Bureau.
His largest donors — $10,000 each for the election cycle — included national engineering firms GarverUSA and HNTB Holdings, the Oklahoma Association of General Contractors, QuikTrip, The Oklahoma Nurse Anesthetists, the Oklahoma Bankers Association, the Oklahoma Optometric Association and United Health.
Individual donors of note included eight members of Lawton’s Hilliary family, each giving the maximum $5,800; professional golfer Talor Gooch and his wife, Elizabeth; former University of Oklahoma football coach Bob Stoops and his wife, Carol; country music star Toby Keith (as Toby Covell) and his wife, Patricia; and five members of the Glover automobile dealership family who contributed a combined $26,100.
None of Hofmeister’s donors reached $10,000 in the last period, although the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers local ($2,500) and national organization ($7,500) totaled that amount combined.
Tribal governments, most of whom are at odds with Stitt, contributed $20,300.
Individual donors of note for Hofmeister included former Govs. Brad Henry and David Walters; Tulsa philanthropists Lynn and Stacy Schusterman; former Congressman Dan Boren; six members of the Price family, prominent downtown Tulsa property owners; former Cherokee Nation Chief Bill John Baker; Chickasaw Nation Commerce Secretary Bill Lance; and Chickasaw business analyst Kendall Lance.
In another closely watched statewide race, Democratic state superintendent nominee Jena Nelson significantly outraised Republican Ryan Walters during the last reporting period.
Walters, who had difficult primary and runoff races while Nelson had no opponent, still has the advantage for the election cycle.
Nelson reported receipts of $463,453.76, compared with $258,668.44 for Walters.
Nelson spent about $400,000 and had about $85,000 in cash.
Walters spent about $225,000 and had about $70,000 in cash heading into the final days of the campaign.
Independent expenditures, which were much in evidence during the Republican primary and runoff, have been much less so in the general. About $250,000 has been spent on Nelson’s behalf, and around $100,000 has been spent for Walters.
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