Salazar leads Beeson in Colorado campaign
Glenwood Springs correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS – If money is the life’s-blood of politics, Martin Beeson’s campaign to become Colorado’s newest congressman is showing symptoms of low blood pressure, although Election Day is more than a year away.
An online campaign-finance reporting site, OpenSecrets.org, reported this week that incumbent U.S. Rep. John Salazar, a Blue Dog Democrat in his third term representing Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, has raised nearly 50 times as much money as Beeson, the Republican district attorney for the 9th Judicial District, which encompasses Garfield, Rio Blanco and Pitkin counties.
In addition, according to the same website, Salazar currently has nearly 100 times as much cash on hand as does Beeson, who is Salazar’s only declared opponent so far in the 2010 election cycle.
As far as spending goes, Salazar, whose district covers much of the Western Slope, including Aspen and Glenwood Springs, has outspent Beeson by a factor of more than 4,000, the website revealed.
As of the last reporting period, which ended on June 30, Salazar had raised $279,626 in his campaign to stay in office, and had spent $156,370. His war chest was reported to contain $588,010.
Beeson, according to the website, has raised $6,100, spent $36, and has $6,063 on hand.
In its details regarding contributions, the website lists Salazar’s contributions from political action committees at $198,549, or 71 percent, with $79,327 (28 percent) coming from individual donations.
Salazar’s biggest single donor listed on the website is the Blue Dog PAC, which contributed $10,000 to his campaign, followed by $5,000-level donors including Wal-Mart, two unions, the Farm Credit Council and the American Crystal Sugar company.
Beeson, on the other hand, has raised nearly all his money so far from individual contributions (92 percent), on top of $500 in “candidate self-financing.” The website reported “no contribution data found” for the Beeson campaign.
Despite the fact that Election Day is 15 months away, the ColoradoPols.com website already has declared Salazar the likely winner in the race, specifically noting his seat on two subcommittees of the Committee on Appropriations – the Energy and Water Development and the Veterans Affairs subcommittees – as key to the congressman’s prospects.
“With appropriations appointment, Salazar is safe in this seat,” declares the website, adding that Beeson “needed to do a better job … to show that he was real challenger; didn’t, and isn’t.”
Beeson could not be reached for comment Tuesday afternoon.
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