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Rick Scott raised $10.7 million in quarter, campaign says

The Republican U.S. Senate candidate says most of his money so far has come from Floridians.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott announced his run for U.S. Senate on Monday April 9, 2018, in Orlando. [MONICA HERNDON | Times]
Florida Gov. Rick Scott announced his run for U.S. Senate on Monday April 9, 2018, in Orlando. [MONICA HERNDON | Times]
Published Jul. 9, 2018
Updated Jul. 9, 2018

Gov. Rick Scott raised more than $10.7 million for his U.S. Senate campaign in less than three months, a total the campaign calls "historic" and more than any other Senate race in the country.

The haul included support from more than 11,000 contributors, 80 percent of whom live in Florida, Scott's campaign announced, and that more than 75 percent of all contributors gave less than $500.

Those numbers, highlighted in a Scott campaign news release, are meant to counter a Democratic narrative that the Republican governor is backed by a long line of out-of-state business interests.

The details of Scott's campaign report aren't yet publicly available.

Scott formally began his challenge to Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson on April 9.  His initial quarterly report of contributions and expenses is due at the Federal Elections Commission on July 15.

"We look forward to continuing this unmatched success," said Scott's national finance chairman, Tom Hicks, a Texas investor and the former owner of baseball's Texas Rangers.

A release from the Scott campaign noted that the $10.7 million total "does not include any candidate contributions." Scott invested heavily in both of his two previous campaigns for governor in 2010 and 2014.

READ MORE: Scott-Nelson Senate race will be very, very expensive

Nelson, a three-term incumbent first elected in 2000, has raised $13.5 million and spent $3.9 million, leaving him with $10.5 million on hand, according to The totals span more than five years, and begin after Nelson's last victory in 2012.

Multiple statewide polls show the race between Nelson and Scott is very close, but Scott has had an overwhelming early advantage in television advertising.

An April report by Bloomberg, based on fund-raising totals through the first quarter of this year, noted that red-state Democratic senators were outpacing Republicans in all nine states that loom large in deciding which party will control the Senate after 2018.

The list included Sens. Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Bob Casey of Pennsylvania, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Claire McCaskill of Missouri.