Republican Catherine Hanaway on Thursday reported that she had about $1.3 million in the bank for her campaign for Missouri governor.
A likely rival, state auditor Tom Schweich, said he had just more than $1 million on hand.
The two appear to be on a collision course for the 2016 GOP nomination with other candidates, including businessman John Brunner of St. Louis, also considering the race. Fund-raising reports for the fourth quarter of 2014 were due on Thursday.
Schweich just completed a successful re-election campaign for a second term and is expected to announce his campaign for governor in the next few weeks
Hanaway, a former House speaker, already has kicked off her campaign. She’s accepted at least $900,000 in donations from GOP mega-donor Rex Sinquefield. Democrats pounced on that idea Thursday in a media statement.
“During her campaign, Hanaway has done little to prove she’ll be an independent voice advocating for Missouri’s working families,” said Crystal Brinkley, executive director of the Missouri Democratic Party. “Rather than building a grassroots network of supporters, she’s let one wealthy extremist fund a majority of her campaign operation.”
Democrats pointed out that Hanaway accepted $100,000 from the Missouri Club for Growth, a group that Sinquefield almost entirely funds himself.
Chris Koster, the likely Democratic nominee, had not filed his report by 5 p.m. Thursday.