Leading up to this year’s midterm elections, Utah Republican Rep. Blake Moore’s campaign has raised more than a million dollars, while his Democratic challenger says he hasn’t yet earned enough contributions to merit filing a report to the Federal Elections Commission.
According to the most recent FEC filing data, Moore, who represents Utah’s 1st Congressional District, earned over $1.15 million in contributions between Jan. 1 and June 30.
On the other hand, Moore’s competitor, Rick Jones, has not filed a campaign finance report with the FEC because, Jones says, he has only raised around $3,000, which does not meet the filing threshold. The Democrat said he reached out to the FEC to confirm he did not have to file.
According to the FEC, candidates for federal office must file a financial report if they earn or spend more than $5,000 during the campaign.
Jones, a retired economics professor, said that a number of contributions have come through ActBlue, a nonprofit clearinghouse for donations to Democratic campaigns. Most of his donations have come from friends and others who don’t want to see a single candidate on the ticket.
Jones, who ran unsuccessfully for the Utah House in 2006 and 2018, added that he believes some campaign contributions come with strings attached.
“I’ve ran twice for elective office before, and I’m convinced most donations are not really to support a candidate, but to obligate a candidate,” he said. “So much of it works on a Machiavellian basis in that to acquire power, you serve the powerful.”
In a statement to The Salt Lake Tribune, a campaign spokesperson said Moore’s “effective conservative leadership has led to strong support of our campaign.”
“We look forward to maintaining this momentum through November to ensure productive, pro-growth representation for the First District,” the spokesperson said in the statement.
Moore’s campaign has raised $1.15 million so far this year and has spent over $756,000, according to FEC data.
Moore’s political action committee, Team Moore Joint Fundraising Committee, has raised $48,000 this year and has spent over $44,00, the FEC data shows. The joint fundraising committee sent over $18,000 to Moore’s campaign committee in 2022.
A recent poll by the Utah Debate Commission puts Moore with a strong lead over Jones, with the incumbent polling at 62% of the vote compared to Jones’ 32%.
The Utah Debate Commission announced Monday the two will debate at Weber State University in Ogden on Oct. 10 at 6 p.m.