Brian Hodgers increased his lead over the other three Republicans running for House District 52 with $6,750 in contributions last month.
“Our conservative message is hitting a nerve in our community, and I’m very grateful for the folks who want to be part of our campaign,” Hodgers said in a news release. “I look forward to continuing to work hard to get our message of lower taxes, fewer regulations, and more freedom out to all the voters of District 52.”
February’s numbers included just $2,000 in expenditures, leaving the Melbourne business owner with about $340,000 cash on hand, including $40,000 in loans.
His closest competitor, Monique Miller, raised $695 last month for an on-hand total of about $25,300 heading into March, while Robert VanVolkenburg was able to bring in $150, leaving him with a little over $7,000 on hand at month’s end.
Though Hodgers has a prohibitive lead in the money race, he is also facing Republican Sen. Thad Altman in the race, who made the rare decision to head back to the House after serving in the Senate since 2010.
Altman originally filed to run for the HD 51 seat held by House Speaker Steve Crisafulli in the 2018 cycle, when he officially terms out of the Senate but made the decision to switch to HD 52 this cycle in December.
He’s had little time to fundraise since making the switch but was able to bring in $10,000 in contributions in the first part of January, before the 2016 Legislative Session put a freeze on fundraising for sitting lawmakers.
HD 52 is represented by termed-out Republican Rep. Ritch Workman, who is running for the newly redrawn District 17 seat in the Senate. HD 52 leans heavily toward GOP candidates, with 20,000 more registered Republican than Democrats.