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David Gee loans $100K to SD 12 campaign, still lags behind GOP rivals

Villages Republican David E. Gee threw another $100,000 of his own money into his Senate District 12 campaign, according to newly filed campaign finance reports, though he still lags behind GOP Reps. Dennis Baxley and Marlene O’Toole in the money race.

Gee, who filed for the seat March 31, has so far loaned his campaign $205,000, while bringing in less than $4,000 in outside contributions. After $88,422 in expenditures over two weeks, the candidate had $60,000 on hand.

More than $50,000 of Gee’s expenditures went to Tallahassee-based Southern Campaign Resources for consulting services and an ad buy on Brighthouse TV. The bulk of the rest went to Clearwater-based Direct Mail Systems, mainly for digital advertising.

Neither Baxley nor O’Toole have filed reports covering June 25 through July 8, though both candidates were firmly ahead of Gee’s new total as of their June 24 finance reports.

Baxley is far and away the front-runner financially, with more than $500,000 raised and nearly $270,000 of that money on hand in his campaign account. O’Toole, who filed for the seat in early March, has raised a little over $93,000 and has more than $83,000 on hand.

The newly redrawn SD 12 includes half of Marion County, northern Lake County and all of Sumter County and carries a significant advantage for Republicans. About 45 percent of the district’s electorate are registered Republican, with 35 percent belonging to the Democratic Party.

The race has also drawn write-in candidate Elizabeth McNutt, who filed the day before the qualifying deadline and has not yet posted any contributions for her campaign.

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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