Fiona McFarland reported a significant influx in donations, closing the cash gap with Drake Buckman in House District 72.
The Sarasota Republican took in $38,290 between Sept. 5 and 18. Buckman collected $13,610 over the same time frame.
Since filing early last year, McFarland has raised a substantial $293,003 to run in the battleground district. But she used up more than a quarter-million of that winning the Republican primary. That left her, until recently, with a cash disadvantage to Buckman, who has raised just $95,905 but avoided any primary.
But after the recent infusion of resources, McFarland reports $58,182 on hand to Buckman’s $55,988.
Additionally, McFarland’s Friends of Sarasota political committee raised another $5,000, all courtesy of venture capitalist Howard Cox, and now has $12,521 in the bank. Buckman’s The Sunshine Fund cashed a $6,000 check from Flippable’s Florida Victory Fund, bringing its total to $16,000 waiting to be spent.
That puts both HD 72 candidates within $1,300 of one another in available dollars, each with under $72,000 cash on hand. So with near equal financial footing, the candidates fight for an open seat now held by Margaret Good, a Democrat who held onto this seat in 2018 by only 1,215 votes. Good is now running for Congress.
On top of donations, McFarland also saw $17,500 worth of in-kind support from the Republican Party of Florida, through polling and campaign research.
As far as checks go, money flowed in from political committees, including $1,000 donations from Senate hopeful Jim Boyd’s Building On Your Dreams and the Rep. Jayer Williamson-associated 21st Century Public Servant, as well as one from a realty firm owned by Rep. James Buchanan. Individual business leaders such as Myakka City agriculture leader Paul Bispham, lobbying firm Rubin Turnbull and business consultant Brittany Riner made maximum $1,000 contributions.
Buckman, who for his part has focused on individual donors, reports just a few $1,000 donations, all from individuals. Those include Sarasota retirees Catherine Cooper and Joan Geyer and Longboat Key retirees Johnathan and Kristina Berg.