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Keith Perry wins last SD 8 primary money report, still lags behind Rod Smith

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Gainesville Republican Rep. Keith Perry scored a fundraising win over former Sen. Rod Smith in his final report before Florida’s primary election, but he still has a long way to go to catch up to his Democratic Senate District 8 rival.

Perry, who currently holds the HD 21 seat, brought in $48,850 between Aug. 13 and Aug. 25, including a whopping 37 checks for the maximum contribution of $1,000. The performance was a huge jump from previous two reports, which combined for a middling $5,725.

The third term representative spent just $12,461, mainly on campaign staff, leaving him with about $216,000 on hand Aug. 25 on total fundraising of $385,000.

Through the same date, Smith had $276,000 in his campaign account and another $81,000 on hand for his political committee, “Independent Leadership for Florida.”

Though neither Perry nor Smith faced primary challengers, the former Florida Democratic Party chair brought in $17,500 in committee cash and $14,595 through his campaign in the two weeks leading up to the Aug. 30 election.

The biggest single donor was publican employee trade group AFSCME, which chipped in $14,000 to Smith’s committee and another $1,000 to his campaign account. His campaign also received another $32,000 in “In Kind” support from the Florida Democratic Party for polling and staffing costs.

The pre-primary report brings Smith’s to-date total to $915,000 across the two accounts, with $357,000 of that money on hand.

The Alachua County-based district holds a slight advantage for Democrats. Back in 2012, the district was carried by President Barack Obama by 1 point.

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for SaintPetersBlog and While at the University of Florida, Wilson was an editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and after graduation, he moved to Los Angeles to cover business deals for The Hollywood Reporter. Before joining Extensive Enterprises, Wilson covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools.

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