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Matt Caldwell is the cash winner so far this year in the Ag Commissioner race.


Matt Caldwell raises $164K in April

Republican state Rep. Matt Caldwell’s Agriculture Commissioner bid crossed the $2 million mark in total fundraising last month after bringing in $164,275 between his campaign and committee accounts.

“I am proud to be running a true, statewide race, from the Panhandle to the Keys. Our hard work has resulted in a tremendous amount of support as we talk to voters across the Sunshine State and our grassroots campaign is rapidly growing,” Caldwell said.

“Momentum is on our side and supporters know the importance of electing a principled conservative to serve as Commissioner of Agriculture and on the Florida cabinet.”

Caldwell’s political committee, Friends of Matt Caldwell, received $114,050 of that money while the campaign account brought in $50,225. He has $1.12 million on hand between the two accounts.

The announcement also touted a recent endorsement Caldwell received from the Florida Police Benevolent Association, as well hitting 65,000 miles traveled across the Sunshine State talking to voters since launching the campaign in May 2017.

The Lehigh Acres Republican is running against Sebring Sen. Denise Grimsley, former Winter Haven Rep. Baxter Troutman and new entrant Mike McCalister in the Republican Primary for the Cabinet post.

The Caldwell campaign says it “leads in actual funds raised by donors in this race” – a jab at Troutman, who has led the pack in fundraising since filing due to $2.7 million in self-funding.

Caldwell’s opponents have not yet filed their April reports, though at last tally Troutman had raised about $3 million, including self-funding, and had nearly $2.8 million on hand.

At the end of March, Grimsley had about $870,000 on hand between her campaign and committee. McCalister has not shown any contributions since entering the race on March 13.

The primary election is Aug. 28.

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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