Luetkemeyer's loans to campaign surpass $1 million

Tuesday, October 28, 2008 | 7:23 p.m. CDT; updated 9:18 a.m. CDT, Wednesday, October 29, 2008

WASHINGTON — Republican Blaine Luetkemeyer has passed the $1 million mark when it comes to spending his own money in Missouri's 9th District congressional race.

Campaign finance records filed this week with the Federal Election Commission show Luetkemeyer loaned an additional $200,000 to his campaign on Saturday, bringing the total amount of personal funds to $1,120,000.

Luetkemeyer, of St. Elizabeth, is running against Democrat Judy Baker, a state House member from Columbia.

The latest cash infusion means Luetkemeyer ranks 12th among all self-funding U.S. House candidates, based on the total amount each candidate contributed to his or her own campaign, according to an analysis by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics.

Baker has raised more than $1.2 million from contributors, while Luetkemeyer has raised about $600,000 in addition to his own money.

The seat, which includes Columbia, western St. Charles County and Franklin County south of the Missouri River, opened when Republican Rep. Kenny Hulshof launched a bid for governor.

Luetkemeyer spokesman Paul Sloca said the candidate's self-funding is less than what "liberal special interests" outside the district have spent on Baker.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and other Democratic-leaning independent groups have spent a total of more than $1.7 million for Baker.

Luetkemeyer has also benefited from outside spending. The National Republican Congressional Committee has spent more than $600,000 on television ads and other expenses in the race.

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