Angle fundraising surges in Senate race |

Angle fundraising surges in Senate race

AP Political Writer

LOS ANGELES – Nevada Republican Sharron Angle’s Senate campaign was broke two months ago, but in a surprising turnaround the tea party favorite banked more money than Majority Leader Harry Reid between April and June, records showed Thursday.

Angle raised $2.6 million during the three-month period, topping the powerful Democratic leader, who pulled in $2.4 million.

Despite the surge in money, Angle remains at a significant financial disadvantage against Reid. She has about $1.8 million in the bank, while Reid has $9 million.

Angle’s jump in donations came mostly after a come-from-behind June primary victory when she was pleading with supporters for cash to oust Reid, who intends to raise $25 million in his bid for a fifth term.

Just two months ago, Angle’s campaign was $39,000 in debt.

The donations show “how much people want to retire Harry Reid,” Angle said in a statement.

Reid’s campaign said he would have the money to present a “clear choice” to voters in November.

Between April and June Reid spent an average of about $1 million a month, much of it on TV ads that depict the tea party-backed Angle as a conservative extremist who would gut government programs.

That means Reid was spending more money than he was taking in. He will need to raise an average of more than $44,000 a day to reach his goal of $25 million by the November election.

Between April 1 and May 19, Angle was struggling in a tight primary race and raised only $300,000. She ended that period with $132,000 in the bank but $170,000 in debts.

Between May 20 and June 30, her donations jumped to $2.3 million.

Angle received money from 46,000 people, with an average contribution of $49. She raised $1.3 million on the Internet.

The high-profile campaign has been a luring a growing number of outside groups that have been running TV ads independently of the campaigns. David Bossie, who heads the political arm of Citizens United, said the conservative advocacy group will begin airing TV ads to help Angle within days.

“Defeating Harry Reid is at the top of every conservative’s list,” Bossie said.

According to its website, the group supports limited government and free enterprise. A lobbying arm of the group is seeks U.S. withdrawal from the United Nations. The group was at the center of a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling that overturned a law prohibiting companies and unions from using their general treasuries to run campaign ads urging the election or defeat of specific candidates.