Ashley Moody, a Republican running for attorney general, and Baxter Troutman, a GOP candidate for agriculture commissioner, each added six figures in campaign cash last month, while their primary opponents were sidelined by a rule that bars state lawmakers from raising money during the Legislative Session.
Meanwhile, state Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis brought in more than $300,000 as he continued to build a fundraising edge in his campaign to win a full term on the state Cabinet.
State candidates and political committees faced a Monday deadline for filing finance reports showing activity through February. Here are the latest numbers in state Cabinet races:
Chief Financial Officer
Patronis hauled in $232,293 during February for his campaign account and another $72,500 for his political committee, known as Treasure Florida. Contributions included $10,000 from Benefit Solutions, a Sarasota insurance agency, and $15,000 from Greg Lindberg, chairman of the Durham, N.C.-based investment firm Eli Global.
Patronis also spent nearly $40,000 last month, mostly on consulting work.
Since August, Patronis had raised $2.28 million in the two accounts, of which just over $200,000 had been spent as of Feb.28. Patronis, a former lawmaker and former member of the state Public Service Commission, was appointed to the Cabinet post last summer by Gov. Rick Scott.
Sen. Tom Lee, a Thonotosassa Republican who has said he’s preparing to run for CFO, was prevented from raising money in February along with other lawmakers.
Lee’s political committee, known as The Conservative, spent $28,730 last month. Most of the money went to Data Targeting, a consulting firm in Gainesville.
Former state Sen. Jeremy Ring, the only Democrat in the race, posted $23,936 in contributions to his personal account last month and another $1,000 to his political committee, the Florida Action Fund.
Ring, who staked his campaign with $100,000 of his own money, started March with a combined $357,000 available in the two accounts.
In the Republican contest for Attorney General, Moody, a former Hillsborough County circuit judge, picked up a total of $183,393 in February as her three Republican opponents — state House members Jay Fant, Frank White and Ross Spano — were handcuffed by the session fundraising rule.
Seeking to replace term-limited Attorney General Pam Bondi, Moody recorded $122,393 in contributions to her campaign account and $61,000 to the committee Friends of Ashley Moody. The bulk of the money contributed to the political committee, $50,000, came from the Florida Prosperity Fund, which is tied to the business-lobbying group Associated Industries of Florida.
Moody entered March with nearly $1.5 million in cash on hand in the two accounts, Moody also took advantage in February of about $13,000 worth of in-kind assistance from the Republican Party of Florida.
While lawmakers in the contest could not raise money in February, they spent tens of thousands of dollars.
Fant, of Jacksonville, went through $82,662 in February, with the money coming from his campaign account and political committee, known as Pledge This Day. Much of the money went to campaign consultants and opposition research.
He started March with a combined total of $794,843 in the accounts.
Spano, of Dover, spent $1,963 last month on mileage and lodging reimbursements.
Spano started March with just under $85,000 on hand in the campaign account and in the political committee Liberty and Justice for All.
Meanwhile, White, of Pensacola, went through $71,894 in February, covering costs of consulting, research and digital media.
With his campaign account and political committee, known as United Conservatives, White entered March with nearly $2 million on hand.
On the Democratic side of the attorney-general contest, Rep. Sean Shaw of Tampa spent $2,080 — mostly for a campaign website — in February.
In carrying over money from his House campaign, Shaw who declared for the statewide office in mid-January, had about $50,000 on hand as of the end of the February.
Democrat Ryan Torrens, an attorney from Hillsborough County unbound by the legislative fundraising rule, posted $14,779 in contributions in February. Of the overall $90,281 Torrens had raised, all but $13,000 had been spent.
Troutman, a former state House member from Winter Haven, added $143,477 in February, hiking his campaign war chest to more than $2.6 million.
Troutman’s overall numbers are bolstered by $2.6 million of his own money, including $100,000 in February.
Troutman is battling with Rep. Matt Caldwell, a North Fort Myers Republican, and Sen. Denise Grimsley, a Sebring Republican, for the Republican nomination to replace outgoing Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam.
While he couldn’t raise money in February, Caldwell spent $61,840, mostly for political consulting, through his campaign account and the committee Friends of Matt Caldwell.
The campaign account and political committee entered March with $1.055 million on-hand.
Grimsley last month spent $69,815 through her campaign account and the political committee known as Saving Florida’s Heartland. The money went to consultants, staff salaries and advertising.
Grimsley exited February with $839,691 in the accounts.
Putnam, who is prevented by term limits from seeking reelection, is running for governor.
Among the three Democrats in the contest, David Walker, a marine biologist from Fort Lauderdale, raised $1,153 and loaned $9,382 to his campaign last month.
Homestead Mayor Jeffrey Porter posted no cash coming in or out of his personal account or political committee — Friends of Jeff Porter — during his first full month in the contest.
No report was posted early Tuesday for Democrat Thomas Clayton White of Tallahassee.