Republican U.S. Rep. Brian Mast is bringing in plenty of cash. The incumbent in Florida’s 18th Congressional District posted another quarterly report with nearly $1 million raised.
Mast also spent more than $556,000 during the period. But his third quarter haul of nearly $995,000 leaves him with nearly $2.16 million in his war chest as he faces two challengers.
Mast first won the seat in 2016. Since then, he has easily defeated Primary challenges in 2018 and 2020, securing nearly 78% of the vote in 2018 and 86% of the vote in 2020.
Melissa Martz is challenging Mast in the Republican Primary this cycle. Martz raised just under $32,000 during the third quarter, which covered financial activity from July 1-Sept. 30. Martz showed just under $5,400 in cash on hand as of Sept. 30.
The past two General Election cycles have also been reasonably comfortable wins for Mast despite facing Democratic candidates with significant resources.
Former state Senate candidate Corinna Balderramos Robinson recently filed to join the contest and is the only Democratic candidate in the race. She filed her paperwork on Sept. 1, leading to a shortened fundraising window for the third quarter. Balderramos Robinson raised less than $6,500 and ended the period with less than $4,700 on hand.
That’s clearly well short of Mast’s fundraising numbers. But the fourth quarter — Balderramos Robinson’s first full quarter as a CD 18 candidate — should give some more insight as to her ability to raise enough cash to make a General Election race competitive.
CD 18 covers parts of northern Palm Beach County — including West Palm Beach — and extends into Martin and St. Lucie counties. Those boundaries could be affected by the state’s decennial redistricting process, however.
Candidates and political committees faced a Friday deadline to report all financial activity through Sept. 30.