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Monday, February 8, 2016
Political arena

Rangel beats Espaillat in fundraising so far

By Shant Shahrigian

Unofficial figures from Rep. Charles Rangel and his main Democratic primary challenger, state Sen. Adriano Espaillat, show the incumbent has raised $42,000 more than his rival so far this year. The underdog in the race, Rev. Michael Walrond, reported raising far less money than either.

Before the latest campaign finance figures became available on the Federal Election Committee’s website, a spokesman for Mr. Rangel’s campaign said the congressman has received $272,000 in donations since his late December announcement that he will seek a 23rd term in Congress. The spokesman added that gives Mr. Rangel $223,000 in cash on hand.

Mr. Espaillat released a statement saying he has received $230,000, with most of the funds coming after the official start of his campaign in February. A spokeswoman for Mr. Espaillat said he has about $220,000 in cash on hand.

The senator’s statement added that 46 percent of the donations from nearly 400 supporters came in contributions of $100 of less. The senator called that proof of major on-the-ground support for his campaign.

“I am proud of what we have been able to raise in such a short period of time,” Mr. Espaillat said in the statement.

Rev. Walrond’s campaign raised just $63,000, but sought to put a positive spin on the development.

“We knew from the get-go that our opponents would raise more than us, and that’s fine,” his campaign manager said in a statement. “What’s important here is that Mike transcends the power money has over elections.”

Bronx Dems out in force

Mr. Espaillat’s campaign is seeking to make hay out of Mr. Rangel’s lack of a strong presence in the Bronx part of the 13th congressional district. A day after the first candidates’ debate on April 10, Mr. Espaillat’s campaign released a statement criticizing the congressman for remarking he had been apprehensive after first learning of 2012 redistricting to include parts of the Bronx in his district. Mr. Espaillat also reiterated previous promises to open a district office in the Bronx, something Mr. Rangel is yet to do.

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