Big Money Flows in Crist-Rubio Florida Primary
On the same day as a new poll showed the Republican Senate primary in Florida essentially tied, new fundraising numbers released by Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (R) and former state Speaker Marco Rubio also indicated that the financial gap is closing in the closely watched contest. Crist will report raising $2 million during the last three months of 2009, while Rubio raked in $1.75 million.Still, Crist continues to dominate when it comes to cash on hand. Rubio had $2 million in the bank as of Dec. 31, while Crist had more than $7.5 million on hand.As Crist’s fundraising totals have decreased over three quarters, Rubio has watched his fundraising take off. Rubio’s fourth-quarter numbers are his best total yet and are a reflection of the highly successful grass-roots campaign he is running targeting Republican activists.Crist’s total is down from the $2.5 million he raised in the third quarter and $4.3 million he raised in the second quarter of last year, but it is still an impressive haul.The new fundraising totals were released on the same day as a new poll from Quinnipiac University showed Rubio statistically tied with the governor in the Senate GOP primary.On Monday, Rep. Kendrick Meek, the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination, announced that he raised $1.2 million during the fourth quarter and had $3.3 million in cash on hand as of the end of the year.