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HD 114 hopeful Daisy Baez gains fundraising ground in October

The first campaign finance report for House District 114 Democratic hopeful Daisy Baez is in, and she’s already making up ground on her competition for termed-out Rep. Erik Fresen’s seat.

Baez raised $14,078 during her first month on the trail, besting Republican front-runner John Couriel and surpassing the other three candidates’ on-hand totals thus far. Baez snagged 44 percent of the vote against Fresen in 2014, and was able to pull together more than $250,000 in the process, much of it from the Democratic Party.

With Fresen off the ballot, party support and the high likelihood of increased turnout due to a presidential election, Baez stands a better shot at taking the seat in 2016. She’ll still have to get through a primary against Alberto Santana and perennial candidate Ross Hancock, though that shouldn’t be too big of a challenge.

The Santana campaign has about $5,500 on-hand, though he hasn’t brought in a single contribution since Baez filed for the seat on Oct. 2 — his campaign’s only sign of a pulse was a pair of $25 contributions from Oct. 1. Hancock won’t take any oxygen from Baez’s fundraising efforts, either. He pledged early on to run his 2016 campaign on $99 of his own money, and has kept his word through 13 months in the campaign.

Couriel, who filed for the seat in August 2014, brought in $8,700 last month which brings his on-hand total to $88,320, though his primary challenger, Jose Pazos, has a little more fight than those on the Democratic side.

Pazos only took in $200 last month, but has shown some fundraising ability in past months. He’s raised about $17,000 so far, but spent $10,465 of that money on direct mail campaigns to get his name out. If he can string together a couple more big fundraising months, he could prove to be a thorn in Couriel’s side when primary voters head to the polls.

Written By

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for Florida Politics. He is a former editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and business correspondent at The Hollywood Reporter. Wilson, a University of Florida alumnus, covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools and The Florida Current prior to joining Florida Politics.

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