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Rand Paul speaks during a campaign stop in London Sept. 28.





The heavyweight candidates in the U.S. Senate race Thursday announced third-quarter fundraising totals, each trying to parlay their fundraising success into a perception of strength and popularity.

Rand Paul continues to produce surprising fundraising figures in his race for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination, reporting he’d raised more than $1 million in the past three months while Democrat Jack Conway appears to have done almost as well in the third quarter.

Conway didn’t announce a specific third-quarter fundraising total but he issued a statement saying he’d raised more than $2 million total for the campaign. He announced nearly $1.3 million in the first quarter.

Paul’s main Republican rival, Secretary of State Trey Grayson, reported raising nearly $643,000. That brings his total for the campaign to $1,245,992 over six months – slightly more than Paul raised in only three months.

Democratic Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo’s campaign issued a press release indicating he’d raised $513,658, his largest three-month total so far, according to his campaign. That brings his total to day to about $1.2 million and he said he had about $751,000 cash on hand at the end of the third quarter.

Paul, a Bowling Green eye surgeon and son of former Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul, raised 1,010,668 dollars in the third quarter according to summary pages on his Federal Election Commission report supplied by his campaign. More than half came in the form of small, un-itemized contributions.

Paul has utilized the internet fundraising network established by his father’s presidential campaign and many of his contributions are believed to be from outside the state, something Grayson has tried to highlight by noting that 92 percent of his – Grayson’s – contributions came from within Kentucky. Paul has previously it doesn’t matter that many of his contributors live outside Kentucky because his campaign is national.

Paul’s summary report showed he has $912,000 on hand. Grayson has $1,117,655 on hand.

Republican and Elkton businessman Bill Johnson had not reported third quarter fundraising totals as of Thursday afternoon. During the second quarter, Johnson reported raising $22,000 and had about $7,000 cash on hand.

The only two candidates in the race whose reports were already available on the FEC web site (www.fec.gov) as of noon Thursday were Democrats Darlene Fitzgerald Price, a former U.S. Customs agent who lives in Whitley City, and Jefferson County businessman Maurice Sweeney.

Price reported raising $22,000 total so far in her campaign, including a $2,500 personal loan of her own. She reported $7,800 cash on hand at the close of the third quarter.

Sweeney also made a personal loan to his campaign of $14,400 and has a balance of almost $11,000.

Candidates had until midnight Thursday to file their third quarter reports with the FEC.

RONNIE ELLIS writes for CNHI News Service and is based in Frankfort. Reach him at rellis@cnhi.com. Follow CNHI News Service stories on Twitter at www.twitter.com/cnhifrankfort.

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