The Democratic challenger to Republican Rep. Rick Roth is not yet waging much of a campaign, but Republicans are pouring money into holding onto House District 94.
The Florida House Republican Campaign Committee gave Roth’s campaign an eye-popping $49,000 in the last reporting period, plus $5,750 in research support. That donation is more than 12 times the total amount that Democrat Terence Davis has on hand to spend for his campaign to represent the district that includes Pahokee, Royal Palm Beach and Belle Glade.
Republicans are keen to maintain their foothold here after redistricting shifted the district into a true toss-up.
Roth, on the hunt for his fourth term, is just one of two Republican lawmakers who represent districts entirely contained within blue Palm Beach County. But redistricting reapportioned Roth’s district so that it went from the lightest shade of red to one that supported President Joe Biden by 0.08 percentage points.
Roth, who is a farmer, is certainly several laps ahead of his rival in the money race. As of Aug. 9, he reported a total of $108,620 cash on hand, compared to the $3,870 that Davis holds. Davis served on the Riviera Beach City Council and works as a consultant for emergency preparedness
Between Aug. 6 and Sept. 9, Roth raised the most in any month this election cycle: $62,200.
Besides the money from the state Republican committee, Roth received $1,000 checks from Rep. Lauren Melo’s committee, Friends of Lauren Melo; Rep. Bob Rommel’s political committee, Florida Conservative Committee; Rep. Bobby Payne’s Committee, Conservatives for Rural Florida; and Rep. Tom Leek’s committee, Living Life with Purpose. Donations from the real estate sector totaled $3,000 for this period.
Roth’s campaign expenditures reached their highest levels for this campaign cycle during the period between Aug. 6 and Sept. 9 — spending $4,226. A check for nearly $3,000 went to Direct Mail Systems in St. Petersburg for door hangers, but it looks like he needs to spend more. The certificate for his website — voterickroth.com — expired last week and needs to be renewed.
Davis, meanwhile, raised $1,190 in the same time frame and spent $525. Marquee names on his donor list include Democratic Sen. Lori Berman, who represents Palm Beach County’s Senate District 26, and Katherine Waldron, the Democratic nominee for House District 93, both contributing $250 each to Davis’ campaign.
His sole expense for this period was $525 to Photo Chinaman in North Lauderdale for door hangings.
The campaigns faced a deadline on Sept. 16 for reporting all financial activity through Sept. 9.