Dems lead fundraising in AG race, but Hill still ahead of GOP rivals

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Incumbent Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill continues to lead his Republican challengers in available funds for the 2020 election, though his war chest is less than both Democratic candidates vying to take his job.

First-quarter campaign finance filings show Hill had $80,173.46 as of March 31, compared to the $183,659.78 he finished with at the end of 2019.

Comparatively, Indianapolis attorney John Westercamp, the first to officially join the GOP race, finished the first quarter with $56,634.29, up from $38,646.42 at the end of 2019. Former Revenue Commission Adam Krupp, who joined the race in January,  reported first-quarter funds of $51,193.43.

In the Democratic race, former Evansville Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel continues to lead in fundraising, reporting funds of $662,724.13 in the first quarter. He ended 2019 with $609,310.24.

The bulk of Weinzapfel’s funds – $487,000 – came from a political action committee he created after he decided not to run for reelection in Evansville in 2011.

Democratic state Sen. Karen Tallian of Ogden Dunes is also in the six digits, reporting $101,528.69 in Q1. She ended 2019 with $144,159.09. The lawmaker also has $7,029.30 in Senate campaign funds.

Hill’s largest Q1 contribution came from the RAGA – Republican Attorneys General Association – Action Fund. The group, for which Hill serves on the Executive Committee, donated $25,000 to his 2020 campaign.

The incumbent AG also received contributions from several lawyers and law groups nationwide, as well as $1,000 from the Hoosier Beverage Association PAC. His first-quarter expenditures totaled $122,287.27.

As the fundraising leader, Weinzapfel’s largest contributions have come from the Northern Indiana Operators Joint Labor-Management PAC, the Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters COPE and a construction/engineering individual named Jeffrey Justice. Each contribution was $10,000.

Weinzapfel also received $1,500 from the Frost Brown Todd PAC and $250 from the Evansville law firm of Berger & Berger LLP, as well as thousands in monetary contributions from unions and labor organizations. Democratic State Reps. Sheila J. Klinker, Lafayette, and Matt Pierce, Bloomington, also contributed, donating $50 and $100, respectively.

Weinzapfel’s expenditures were $125,222.74.

Tallian’s most recent large contribution came Dec. 26, 2019, from a man named James McKamey, listed as an “office and administrative” professional, who donated $15,000. She also received support from State Sen. Frank Mrvan, D-Hammond, who gave $100. Her expenses were $52,828.80.

Westercamp, an attorney with Bose McKinney & Evans, received $10,000 from his firm on March 30. He also received $10,000 from Kathleen Smith, listed as a “health care/medical” professional.

Political action committees for Rep. Tim Wesco and Sen. Eric Bassler, both Republicans, gave Westercamp $1,000 and $2,5000, respectively. He paid out $26,014.21 in expenses in Q1.

In his first campaign finance filings, Krupp reported his largest contribution, $10,000, came from Janet L. Coyle, an “office and administrative professional.” He also received $1,000 from the Frost Brown Todd PAC and reported the least amount of expenditures, $33,810.18.

None of these candidates will be on the ballot for Indiana’s primary, as both Democrats and Republican in Indiana select their AG candidates at their state conventions.

Already the Indiana Democrats have moved their convention online in light of COVID-19. The state’s primary itself has been moved from May to June to stem virus exposure.

The state Republican Party is still scheduled to meet in downtown Indianapolis in June, according to the Indianapolis Business Journal, though party chair Kyle Hupfer said they are looking into all options.

The candidates selected by each party will then proceed to the November general election, where their names will appear on the ballot.

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