TAMPA — State House candidate Sean Shaw raised $34,600 in the second quarter of the year, bringing his total campaign treasury to $64,575.
That's more than triple the total posted by the next closest candidate in the four-way Democratic primary to replace state Rep. Betty Reed, D-Tampa, who is leaving her seat House District 61 because of term limits.
"I'm just happy we're getting a lot of support, and I'm happy that we've got a lot of momentum behind us," Shaw said.
Shaw, 35, is an attorney who served as Florida's Insurance Consumer Advocate and is the son of retired Florida Supreme Court Justice Leander J. Shaw Jr. His contributions averaged about $338 each (the maximum allowed is $500), and his contributor list includes former Florida chief financial officer and Democratic gubernatorial nominee Alex Sink, who gave $500. Shaw, who held a June 19 fundraiser at the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables, raised more than 79 percent of his money outside of Hillsborough County.
Shaw said fundraising is one part of a successful campaign and said he would soon begin walking the district to collect signatures to qualify by petition.
"I get a sense that people want to meet you, see you at an event or get a knock on their door," he said. "That's what I intend to do."
Ed Narain raised a total of $19,535 during his first quarter as a candidate. Narain, 36, works as an area manager for AT&T, volunteers for community organizations serving children and young people and served as student body president at the University of South Florida. On Friday, Gov. Rick Scott appointed him to the Children's Board of Hillsborough County.
Narain said his fundraising exceeded his goals and said he was heartened that contributions came in from people in all walks of life. His contributions averaged about $128 each. Nearly 45 percent of his money has come from outside Hillsborough.
Narain said he did not find Shaw's fundraising lead a cause for concern.
"I believe the community is going to have a very good choice on its hands," Narain said. "All the money in the world isn't going to win anybody an election. Elections aren't for sale, people aren't for sale, the district is not for sale."
Former Hillsborough County Democratic Executive Committee vice chairwoman Sharon Carter, 48, has raised $975. Community activist Tatiana Denson, 34, has raised $73 and loaned her campaign $1,000.
District 61 includes Tampa Heights, Seminole Heights and Temple Crest. Black voters account for a little more than 50 percent of its registered voters and nearly two-thirds of its Democrats. The primary election will take place Aug. 26, 2014.
Harrison leads Danish in fundraising
In north Tampa, Republican Shawn Harrison's fundraising has passed Democratic incumbent Mark Danish.
Harrison, who is trying to re-take the House District 63 seat he lost to Danish in 2012, raised $17,545 during his first quarter of fundraising, according to new campaign finance reports filed with the state.
By comparison, Danish raised $6,000 in the second quarter of the year, bringing his total fundraising to $16,050.