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Mia Love leads nation in fundraising by challengers

Tribune file photo Mia Love, a Republican candidate in Utah's 4th Congressional District, is first up with TV ads for the Nov. 4 election.

By Matt Canham

The Salt Lake Tribune

First published Feb 10 2014 11:15AM
Updated Feb 10, 2014 11:01PM

Washington • In the most recent fundraising period, Utah’s Mia Love amassed more money than any other congressional challenger in the nation.

And an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics shows she ranked eighth in fundraising when all of the incumbents were included. This list didn’t include those who contributed their own money to their campaigns.

Love, who is seeking the Republican nomination in Utah’s 4th Congressional District, raised $516,300 in the final three months of 2013, largely through small donations solicited by sending glossy mailers.

If elected, she could become the first black female Republican in the House. Love became a national political figure in 2012, when she challenged Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, and received a prime speaking slot at the Republican National Convention.

She lost narrowly to Matheson, who since has announced he is giving up his House seat at the end of his seventh term and will consider running for governor or Senate in the future.

Love wasted little time announcing her second run and has raised huge amounts of money, though she has spent it nearly as quickly. Her campaign team had $716,100 in the bank at the start of the year.

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, raised the most money in the fourth quarter, pulling in $1.95 million. The list of top fundraisers also included other high-profile Republicans such as Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., who was the GOP’s vice presidential candidate in 2012, and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va.

Only one Democrat made the top eight. Rep. Patrick Murphy, D-Fla., raised $518,300.

Love isn’t the only candidate seeking to replace Matheson. Bob Fuehr, a retired businessman, also is running as a Republican in the district, which includes western Salt Lake and Utah counties. Doug Owens, the son of the late Rep. Wayne Owens, D-Utah, recently announced his plans to seek the Democratic nomination.

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