Attorney General Greg Abbott, who already has the biggest war chest in Texas politics, raised a record $4.78 million in the last two weeks of June, campaign officials said Wednesday.
During a podcast released by Texans for Greg Abbott, campaign finance director Sarah Whitley said 2,100 individuals made contributions to Texans for Greg Abbott in the last fundraising period. She said the figures surpassed previous fundraising periods considering the short period of time in which fundraising was allowed after the conclusion of the 2013 regular legislative session.
“Not only did we break our own record at Texans for Greg Abbott, but we broke all records in the history of Texas by all statewide officeholders in the period after the session,” Whitley said. State candidates aren't allowed to raise money until a session has ended and the governor has a chance to sign or veto all bills. Abbott had two weeks to conduct his fundraising before June 30, the reporting cutoff date.
Abbott is considered the lead contender to replace Gov. Rick Perry, who announced on Monday that he won’t seek re-election for the governor’s office in 2014. The attorney general has yet to make a formal announcement about his future but has an event scheduled in San Antonio this weekend. He is widely expected to run for governor.
Earlier Wednesday, state Rep. Dan Branch, R-Dallas, who is eyeing the attorney general’s office, announced that his campaign was adding heavily to its war chest.
“Thanks to our generous supporters for helping us reach over $4 million on hand without any loans or debt,” Branch said in a post from his Twitter account.
Reports indicated Abbott’s war chest had about $18 million during the previous reporting period. Depending on how much his campaign has spent since then, Abbott’s war chest could total as much as $22 million. Final figures will not be known until the actual reports are released. Candidates have to deliver the reports to the Texas Ethics Commission by July 15.