Under the Dome

US Sen. Richard Burr has $5.3 million as campaign begins

U.S. Senator Richard Burr answers a question during a interview, after speaking at the Kannapolis Rotary Club in Kannapolis, NC on Tuesday, April 7, 2015.
U.S. Senator Richard Burr answers a question during a interview, after speaking at the Kannapolis Rotary Club in Kannapolis, NC on Tuesday, April 7, 2015. dtfoster@charlotteobserver.com

Republican U.S. Sen. Richard Burr raised $817,848 in the final quarter of 2015 – more than the leading Democratic candidate raised during the same period.

Burr’s numbers, released Wednesday by his campaign, were higher than the $585,692 fundraising total posted by former state Rep. Deborah Ross.

But the two candidates are far from evenly matched in campaign money: Burr has built up contributions over his six-year term and had a total of $5.3 million on hand as of Jan. 1.

Burr’s challenger in the March 15 primary, Cary obstetrician Greg Brannon, asked his supporters to chip in an email Wednesday.

“While my opponent is stuffing his campaign coffers with special-interest money, I’m the candidate of grassroots conservatives who are tired of the House of Cards Washington Cartel,” Brannon wrote. “So I know I’m not going to be able to match my opponent dollar-for-dollar. He’s got a virtually unlimited war chest he can use to smear and attack me and my campaign.”

Of Burr’s fourth quarter total, $343,500 came from political committees such as PACs, while $460,323 was from individual donors.

Brannon’s campaign has not yet released fourth quarter fundraising numbers. Because he announced his run for Senate in the final weeks of December, it will be difficult to compare his fundraising to Burr’s number.

Ross’ opponents in the Democratic primary, Spring Lake Mayor Chris Rey and Durham businessman Kevin Griffin, have not yet posted fundraising numbers.

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