Fundraising is a key issue down ballot

“A candidate for a particular down ballot race can raise money from the people most interested in that race,” said Jere Nash, a longtime Democratic campaign consultant.

Nash said examples would be state Treasurer Tate Reeves raising money from Mississippi’s financial community, likewise the legal community and Attorney General Jim Hood.

In January, Reeves reported he had almost $1.2 million in the bank. Reeves has not announced his intentions for 2011. Hood had $90,538 and has announced he is running for re-election.

“There are always segments of the business community that are more interested in some races more than others. Bankers and investment advisers are interested in the treasurer’s race. Farmers, gas station operators and horse people in the agriculture commissioner’s race,” said Andy Taggart, an attorney and longtime Republican Party insider.

“Other examples abound. Those particularly interested in the functions of a particular office are likely to make their funds available in support, regardless of what is going on at the top of the ticket,” he said.

Nash said generally a down ballot race will cost between $550,000 and $1.3 million, depending on how many elections a candidate has to confront.

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Sun Herald