On Oct. 15, local candidates for state House offices made their contributions public with two weeks left until the general election, filing their records with the Missouri Ethics Commission. The local candidates bucked a statewide trend of Republican candidates receiving more contributions than their Democratic counterparts.
Here is a breakdown by race:
Local candidates for the state House released their final finance reports of the campaign season Oct. 15. The numbers are as follows for itemized contributions:
BUSINESSES/BUSINESS OWNERS/SELF-EMPLOYED: $1,941
TOTAL CONTRIBUTORS: 491
TOTAL AMOUNT: $64,850.57
BUSINESSES/BUSINESS OWNERS/SELF-EMPLOYED: $12,700
TOTAL CONTRIBUTORS: 278
TOTAL AMOUNT: $54,353.55
BUSINESSES/BUSINESS OWNERS/SELF-EMPLOYED: $5,125
TOTAL CONTRIBUTORS: 105
TOTAL AMOUNT: $31,181.05
TOTAL CONTRIBUTORS: 1
TOTAL AMOUNT: $325
BUSINESSES/BUSINESS OWNERS/SELF-EMPLOYED: $22,339
TOTAL CONTRIBUTORS: 711
TOTAL AMOUNT: $149,528.37
BUSINESSES/BUSINESS OWNERS/SELF-EMPLOYED: $937
TOTAL CONTRIBUTORS: 44
TOTAL AMOUNT: $38,842.39
Democratic candidate Kelly Schultz received the bulk of her campaign funds from political sources — including political action committees and other politicians — upwards of $40,000 in itemized contributions. Schultz said that many of those donations are from people she has worked with or for in Jefferson City during her past 11 years as an employee in the state Capitol.
Aside from private citizens and the business community, Schultz’s other large contributors are within the educational and medical communities, with education providing approximately $6,000 and the donors from the medical field giving just over $1,000.
Schultz has reported a total of $64,850.57 in itemized contributions and more than $93,000 in total contributions since the start of her campaign.
She said the money raised from donors in education stems from her relationship with MU. Schultz has a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from the university, and her husband, Loren, is a professor in the veterinary school. She said that because of these relationships, the faculty are confident she will support them if elected.
Schultz said that the first bill she plans to file if elected to office is the “Medical Red Tape Reduction Act.” This bill, she said, would aim to cut down on billing errors and insurance fraud.
Schultz said that the medical community supports her because she will advocate that taxpayers' money go back to funding health care in the state.
Republican candidate John Cauthorn has reported nearly $55,000 in itemized contributions since his campaign began. He reported a similar number in total contributions.
Cauthorn received sizable donations to his campaign from the political community — nearly $19,000 — and private citizens —almost $24,000.
While his opponent received a fair amount of funds from the medical and educational communities, Cauthorn had none to speak of from these groups. He received an overwhelming amount of money from people in the business community, nearly $13,000.
As an explanation for this trend in funding, Cauthorn said he’s a good business supporter. He added, “I’m strong on job creation,” and said that creating jobs will be a main focus if he is elected.
A handful of farms donated to Cauthorn — unsurprising, perhaps, not only because the 21st District is largely rural, but because Cauthorn himself is a farmer.
Republican candidate Paul Szopa has spent about $484 total on his campaign for the 23rd District House of Representatives seat held by Stephen Webber. Webber, who is running for re-election, has spent about $13,447 on the race. Both candidates have primarily spent their money on campaign brochures and mailings.
According to his October quarterly report, Webber reported receiving $7,675 last month, bringing the total amount his campaign has raised to $47,024. With all expenses accounted for, Webber reported he has $30,414 on hand.
The majority of Webber’s campaign contributions have come from groups with lobbying interests. His single largest contribution of $2,500 came from the Missouri chapter of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, an advocacy group “of people who share a common commitment to public service,” according to the organization’s website.
The only contribution Szopa reported for the entire election thus far was $325 from the Columbia Federated Republican Women’s Club. He did not receive any contributions during September, according to his quarterly report.
State Rep. Chris Kelly, D-Columbia, received almost $150,000 in itemized contributions for his re-election campaign from more than 700 separate donors. More than 60 percent of his contributions came from Columbia residents, but Kelly also raised more than $9,000 from St. Louis residents and more than $7,500 from Kansas City residents. He also received $6,825 from out-of-state contributors.
Overall, Kelly reported an intake of more than $170,000 total contributions to date.
Kelly said he was proud that his contributions came from a broad range of sources because it showed his openness to work across the political aisle. He mentioned endorsements from the Missouri Labor Council and Missouri Chamber of Commerce, two groups that he said do not often support the same political candidates.
He received more than $20,000 each in contributions from business and education sources, as well as nearly $30,000 from political action committees. Kelly's campaign also brought in close to $15,000 each from medical sources and law firms.
He said that his contributions from organizations and political action committees were a result of his openness to work with different groups of people in Jefferson City. Kelly also attributed his success in garnering donations from individuals to his extensive door-to-door campaigning.
Fifth Ward city councilwoman Laura Nauser, R-Columbia, received slightly less than $39,000 in itemized contributions from 44 contributors. More than 90 percent of her donations came from within Columbia.
Nauser reported receiving more than $40,000 in total contributions thus far.
She received almost $1,000 from business sources and $1,950 from PACs. She received less than $1,000 total from legal, medical, education and construction sources combined. Nauser reported a contribution of $10,000 from her husband in March. She also put in $20,000 of her own money on Oct. 8.
“I want to make sure I am able to get my message out,” she said. "I want to focus on meeting people rather than fundraising for the last two weeks of the campaign.” Nauser also said that she had not been actively campaigning to receive money from PACs. However, she believed that it would be easier to get contributions from those organizations after establishing a record in the legislature.