Democrat Melina Kennedy is starting the year with a nearly $1 million war chest for her expected bid against Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, her campaign says.With that large of a sum of money on hand, some Republicans might conclude Evan Bayh dumped some of his amassed millions in left over campaign money into Kennedy's campaign but that is not the case. Kennedy's largest campaign contribution came from Nasser Hanna, the doctor who was upset in his Democratic primary bid last year to take on U.S. Rep. Dan Burton. Hanna gave Kennedy $60,000. Murray's story notes Ballard started last year off with $1 million in the bank compared to Kennedy's $220,000. Ballard spent only $375,000 in his upset win over Peterson in 2007. Kennedy is clearly raising and spending her money more efficiently than Ballard, which indicates she will have at least spending parity with him going into this year's election. If Bayh makes a substantial contribution to Kennedy as expected this year, Kennedy could actually have more money than Ballard to spend on her campaign.
That puts her not far behind Ballard, whose campaign estimates the Republican has $1.4 million on hand to seek re-election. Kennedy's campaign plans to announce today that she has $939,000 in the bank after raising nearly $900,000 last year.
The 2011 mayor's race is just ramping up, and Kennedy -- who plans to officially announce her candidacy Monday -- still has to defeat at least two other Democratic contenders before she can take on Ballard.
But the large sum solidifies the presumptive Democratic front-runner's status.
Wednesday, January 05, 2011
Where Did The Money Go, Greg?
Mayor Greg Ballard may want to ask the people managing his re-election campaign why Democratic mayoral candidate Melina Kennedy has nearly as much cash on hand for her mayoral campaign as he has after his non-stop fundraising efforts the past three years raised largely from city contractors that should have netted his campaign committee close to $3 million. The Star's Jon Murray is reporting Melina Kennedy's campaign has about $1 million in the bank while Ballard's campaign committee says it has about $1.4 million, indicating that his committee has already spent close to half the amount of money it has raised to date before his re-election campaign even kicked off.