STATE CAPITAL BRIEFS (AFTERNOON EDITION)


newservicefloridaTHE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

BRANDES, SACHS BRING IN CAMPAIGN CASH
Trying to fend off challengers for their Senate seats, incumbent Republican Jeff Brandes and incumbent Democrat Maria Sachs topped all other Senate campaign fundraisers from Aug. 30 to Sept. 12, according to newly filed finance reports. Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, collected $63,450 for his campaign account during the two-week period, giving him an overall total of $631,711. He also reported a $46,000 in-kind contribution from the Republican Party of Florida for campaign staff. Madeira Beach Democrat Judithanne McLauchlan, Brandes’ opponent in Senate District 22 in Pinellas and Hillsborough counties, raised $17,649 during the period, giving her an overall total of $212,665, the reports show. Meanwhile, in a closely watched race in Broward and Palm Beach counties, Sachs, D-Delray Beach, collected $35,598 for her campaign account, giving her an overall total of $263,527. Sachs’ Republican opponent in District 34, former Sen. Ellyn Bogdanoff, collected $23,105 during the period and reported an overall total of $306,815.

MONEY FLOWS TO ARTILES, MORAITIS IN SOUTH FLORIDA
Rep. Frank Artiles, R-Miami, and Rep. George Moraitis, R-Fort Lauderdale, were among the top House campaign fundraisers from Aug. 30 to Sept. 12, as each tries to win a third term in Tallahassee, according to newly filed finance reports. Artiles, who is running in Miami-Dade County’s House District 118, collected $42,100 during the two-week period, giving him an overall total of $221,993. His opponent, Democrat Omar Rivero, had raised a total of $9,217 as of Sept. 12, the reports show. Moraitis, who is running in Broward County’s House District 93, raised $31,995 during the period, giving him an overall total of $169,955. Scott Herman, Moraitis’ Democratic opponent, had raised a total of $4,498 in contributions as of Sept. 12. But Herman also reported making a loan of $250,000 to his campaign on Sept. 11. Meanwhile, in a South Florida House race that has drawn heavy attention, incumbent Rep. Jose Javier Rodriguez, D-Miami, reported collecting $26,982 from Aug. 30 to Sept. 12, bringing his overall total to $219,551, the reports show. Republican Daniel Diaz Leyva, who is trying to unseat Rodriguez in Miami-Dade’s House District 112, raised $13,800 during the period, giving him an overall total of $256,612.

HILL, CRISAFULLI, BOLSTER RE-ELECTION BIDS
Rep. Mike Hill, R-Pensacola, and incoming House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island, each raised more than $30,000 from Aug. 30 to Sept. 12 to help fuel their re-election campaigns, according to newly filed finance reports. Hill, who is running in House District 2 in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties, collected $35,450 during the two-week period, bringing his overall total to $153,856. Democrat Jeremy Lau, who is trying to unseat Hill, had raised a total of $10,295 as of Sept. 12. Crisafulli, who will become House speaker if he wins re-election in Brevard County’s House District 51, raised $31,000 from Aug. 30 to Sept. 12, bringing his overall total to $537,768, the reports show. Democrat Joe Murray, who is challenging Crisafulli, had collected a total of $975 as of Sept. 12. Meanwhile, in the Orlando area, Rep. Karen Castor Dentel, D-Maitland, reported raising $28,670 during the two-week period, giving her a total of $205,453 as she seeks another term in House District 30 in Orange and Seminole counties. Her challenger, Republican Bob Cortes, brought in $9,750 from Aug. 30 to Sept. 12 and reported an overall total of $114,380.

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