Incumbent Mike Caruso begins General Election with $100K advantage over Jim Bonfiglio

Caruso beat Bonfiglio in 2018 by just 32 votes.

After one of the closest contests in the state in 2018, Republican Rep. Mike Caruso is beginning 2020 with plenty of cash to help hold onto his House District 89 seat.

Caruso beat Bonfiglio for the open seat in 2018 by just 32 votes out of more than 78,000 cast. The two are now headed for a rematch on Nov. 3 as Democrats look to push Bonfiglio over the edge this time around.

Bonfiglio has more than $34,000 in cash on hand as of Aug. 21. That’s according to the latest financial reports filed with the Division of Elections. Bonfiglio holds more than $22,000 in his campaign account and nearly $12,000 more in his political committee, Putting Voters First.

Bonfiglio’s $34,000 cash on hand total is about $100,000 short of Caruso’s war chest. The Republican incumbent will enter the General Election with more than $135,000 on hand.

Democrats have their eye on the district not just because of how tight the 2018 contest ended up. The district runs up the coast of Palm Beach County and is home to President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. Turning the district over to Democratic control would certainly be a PR win for Democrats. They’ll likely play up that angle as the race moves forward.

The district has been competitive for several cycles, though not nearly as close as the 2018 contest. HD 89 was also one of only six districts in the entire state to flip from voting for Mitt Romney in 2012 to supporting Hillary Clinton in 2016, according to an analysis by MCI Maps.

While Bonfiglio would like to close the fundraising gap with Caruso, the Democratic challenger has been plenty willing to put his own money into the campaign. Bonfiglio has put more than $72,000 of his own money into the campaign, though he’s yet to spend all that cash.

Caruso added another $8,300 in his latest fundraising report, covering Aug. 14-21. Bonfiglio added around $1,400.

Candidates and political committees faced a Friday deadline to report all financial activity through Aug. 21.

Ryan Nicol

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to [email protected]


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