Democrat Adam Benna had another solid month of fundraising in February, when his campaign account added $29,000 toward his bid for the House District 114 seat.
By last month’s end, the South Miami lawyer held about $74,000 between his campaign and political committee, Sunshine Priorities, to challenge incumbent Republican Rep. Demi Busatta Cabrera in November.
Almost all his February gains came through roughly 75 individual donations ranging from $25 to $1,000, including generous checks from several noteworthy figures in Florida business and politics.
Former U.S. Rep. Donna Shalala contributed $1,000. So did 2021 Miami Beach Commission candidate Raquel Pacheco and TD Bank executive Felipe Basulto, a former chair of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce.
Former South Miami Mayor Philip Stoddard gave $250, as did former Pinecrest Mayor and state Rep. Cindy Lerner.
Adam Gentle, a self-described “anti-corruption lawyer” running to unseat Republican Rep. Jim Mooney in House District 120, chipped in $100.
Lamas Medical, an Miami-based allergy treatment center, gave $1,000. The business’ proprietor, Dr. Ana Lamas, gave Benna another $1,000 in January.
Benna spent $1,500 last month. A third of that went to Plantation-based political advertising agency MDW Communications.
Of $600 he spent on merchant fees, all but $56 went to payment processing company Vantiv.
He also repaid himself $320 for campaign expenses.
Redistricting plans excised HD 114’s portion of Cutler Bay and grew its footprint in Coral Gables. Benna is Busatta Cabrera’s sole challenger for the new seat so far.
Despite having to halt fundraising in the last two months during the Legislative Session, Busatta Cabrera still holds a commanding monetary lead over her challenger. As of Feb. 28, she had more than $193,000 between her campaign and political committee, People Above Politics.
Her only expenditures in February were two payments from each of her fundraising accounts to Coral Gables-based accounting firm Fiore CPA.
HD 114 covers part of Miami-Dade’s southern coast, including parts of Palmetto Bay, Pinecrest and a large chunk of Coral Gables. The district could prove a toss-up later this year.
Candidates faced a March 10 deadline to report all campaign finance activity through the end of February.