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Idaho Republicans still lead fundraising race despite quiet August

A white vote here sign in front of the Idaho Power sign.
Frankie Barnhill
Boise State Public Radio

In August, some Democrats running for statewide office reported bigger bank accounts than their Republican opponents, though those candidates still have a significant uphill battle ahead.

Tom Arkoosh, who was recently selected as the new attorney general candidate for the Democrats, took in more than $110,000 last month.

That’s significantly more than the $86,000 raised by his GOP rival, former Congressman Raul Labrador. Arkoosh has about $35,000 more cash on hand.

Democratic lieutenant governor candidate Terri Pickens Manweiler also has more money in the bank than current House Speaker Scott Bedke (R-Oakley).

However, Bedke raised significantly more than his opponent in August. He netted almost $60,000 last month, compared to Pickens Manweiler’s $18,000.

Both Bedke and Labrador won bruising and expensive primary races in May. Over the totality of the campaign, each has substantially outraised their Democratic opponents by hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Republicans running for other statewide offices are generally far ahead in the fundraising race.

Gov. Brad Little, who’s seeking a second term, tallied $132,000 in donations in August, with nearly $288,000 cash on hand.

Stephen Heidt, his Democratic opponent from Marsing, has run one of the least active campaigns for the top elected office in the state in recent memory. He’s raised less than $20,000 since April – the vast majority of which he’s loaned to himself.

Former State Board of Education president Debbie Critchfield leads in the superintendent of public instruction race with about $60,000 in cash. Terry Gilbert, a lifelong educator, raked in about $11,000 in August, bringing his cash total to nearly $45,000.

Registered Republicans make up 58% of Idaho’s voters as of Sept. 2, compared to Democrats' 13%.

Idaho’s general election is set for Nov. 8.

Follow James Dawson on Twitter @RadioDawson for more local news.

Copyright 2022 Boise State Public Radio

I cover politics and a bit of everything else for Boise State Public Radio. Outside of public meetings, you can find me fly fishing, making cool things out of leather or watching the Seattle Mariners' latest rebuilding season. If you have a tip, please get in touch!