Election coverage 2020

Narrowing the opponent field from three to one didn’t slow Cregg Dalton’s campaign down at all.

The candidate for Citrus County property appraiser who won a four-person Republican primary in August has continued raising money even though his Nov. 3 opponent’s self-funded campaign has a tiny fraction of Dalton’s.

With returned vote-by-mail ballots already accounting for 15% of the total registered voters in Citrus County, post-primary candidates are doing what they can to make sure voters don’t forget about their races in the general election.

As of Friday, the latest reporting deadline, Dalton had collected $87,785 and spent $51,520. Of his donations, $39,500 came following the August primary.

His opponent, no-party affiliation candidate Rich Schroeder, has $3,570 in collections. All but a single $50 individual contributor came from Schroeder.

Other campaign finance highlights, according to county, state and federal candidate reports:

 Sheriff incumbent Mike Prendergast has $153,786 in collections and spent $103,892. Like Dalton, Prendergast also won a four-candidate Republican primary, and he now faces no-party candidate Lee Alexander, who has raised $15,835 and spent $14,433.

• School Board District 2 incumbent Ginger Bryant, who narrowly missed winning re-election outright in the primary and now faces Danielle Damato Doty in the November election, picked up nearly a third of her $21,200 in contributions following the primary. Bryant has spent $18,165.

Doty’s fundraising also has been active post-primary. Of the $49,458 in contributions, more than $17,000 has come since the end of August.

Both candidates have invested heavily in their own campaigns. Bryant contributed just over half — $11,450 — of her listed contributions. For Doty, it’s 65% — $32,500 from the candidate herself.

• In the Florida House of Representatives District 34 race, Republican incumbent Ralph Massullo Jr. has $72,625 in contributions, including $20,000 Massullo provided to open the account in January 2019. His contributors are mainly political action committees and special-interest organizations, with few individual donors.

His Democratic opponent, Dushyant Gosai, has $4,605 in collections and spent $4,375.

• In 2018, Republican U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster cruised to re-election with 65% of the vote over Spring Hill Democrat Dana Cottrell.

The campaign cash wasn’t that close — Webster outspent Cottrell more than 5-to-1.

This year, Cottrell is on pace to collect significantly less than she did in 2018, having raised $47,444, according to the Federal Elections Commission’s latest reporting date of July 29. Webster has $485,127 in contributions and spent $376,971 so far.

The 11th Congressional District encompasses Citrus and all or parts of four other counties.

Contact Chronicle reporter Mike Wright at 352-563-3228 or mwright@chronicleonline.com. To view more of his stories, go to www.tinyurl.com/y3bakm6w.

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