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Incumbents build money edge over their opponents

August 6, 2008

DES MOINES - Members of Iowa's congressional delegation on the November ballot have built an enormous financial edge over their challengers.

Leading the pack is Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin, who is seeking a fifth term in office.

Federal Election Commission records filed last month show that Harkin has raised more than $8.1 million and has about $4.1 million in the bank. His Republican challenger, Christopher Reed, has raised just over $11,400 and has spent nearly all of it.

While Harkin's edge in money is enormous, it is very nearly matched by the state's five sitting congressmen in both parties.

Democratic Rep. Leonard Boswell, who has raised $1.3 million and has about $383,000 in the bank. His challenger, Kim Schmett has raised less than $80,000 and has about $28,700 in the bank.

Boswell's cash on hand is relatively small for an incumbent because he had to fend off a primary challenge from former state legislator Ed Fallon in Iowa's 3rd Congressional District.

In eastern Iowa's 1st District, Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley has raised $779,599 in his bid to win a second term in office, with $419,223 remaining in the bank. State Sen. David Hartsuch, of Bettendorf, has raised $16,662, with $12,664 still on hand.

Also seeking a second term is former college professor David Loebsack, who has raised $683,390, with $469,052 remaining in the bank. His Republican challenger in the 2nd District is Marionnette Miller-Meeks, of Ottumwa, who has raised $133,495. Miller-Meeks was forced to wage a primary campaign as well, and she reports just $5,220 in the bank.

In Northern Iowa's 4th District, seven-term Republican Rep. Tom Latham has raised $1,053,825 and reported $832,389 still in the bank. Democrat Becky Greenwald reported raising $143,444, with $81,940 still on hand.

The most Republican congressional district in the state is western Iowa's 5th District, and GOP Rep. Steve King has also built a financial advantage. He's raised $645,767, with $243,388 in the bank. Democrat Rob Hubler has raised $110,191, with $26,523 on hand.

The financial disclosure reports were filed with the FEC last month, and covered fundraising through the end of June.



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