July 12--Lawyer Billy Richardson, a Fayetteville Democrat who is challenging state Sen. Wesley Meredith, has put $50,000 of his own money toward his campaign.
In a report filed Thursday with the N.C. State Board of Elections, Richardson made the loan June 29 to his campaign, after raising $43,435 in individual contributions in the second quarter of this year.
Richardson, 59, is attempting to unseat Meredith in Senate District 19, which includes parts of Fayetteville and Cumberland County.
Meredith, a Republican who has served two terms in the Senate, raised $65,517 in the second quarter, mostly from individual donors, according to a copy of the financial report provided by his treasurer Friday.
Campaign finance reports were due Friday, but it can take a day or two before they are available online from the state elections board. The quarter was April 20 through June 30.
One important measure of a campaign's finances is cash left over after paying expenses through June 30.
Meredith had $277,829, and Richardson had $79,711.
The Richardson campaign didn't return phone calls Friday seeking comment about the quarterly fundraising or personal loan.
Richardson told The Fayetteville Observer last month he wasn't worried about the early fundraising advantage held by Meredith, a 50-year-old former city councilman who operates a landscaping and general contractor business.
Richardson had a fundraising campaign kickoff June 9 in Fayetteville, where former Democratic Gov. Jim Hunt stumped on his behalf.
According to his report filed with the state, Richardson collected $14,255 in contributions June 9.
In the last two elections, the Senate District 19 race has attracted plenty of outside attention, particularly by the state's two main parties, as well as special interest groups that sponsored advertising that attacked the candidates or their records.
In advertising on television and in voters' mailboxes,
Several North Carolina environmental groups have sponsored advertisements on television and in voters' mailboxes criticizing Meredith's vote this year in favor of natural gas exploration and the controversial use of hydraulic fracturing.
Staff writer Andrew Barksdale can be reached at email@example.com or 486-3565.
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