Democratic U.S. Rep. Walt Minnick outraised his would-be Republican rivals in Idaho's 1st Congressional District during the final three months of 2009.
Minnick, a first-term House member who represents northern and western Idaho, pulled in about $274,000, luring money from Democratic congressional colleagues, political action committees and individuals, according to a Federal Election Commission filing on Sunday.
Republican Vaughn Ward, a former campaign aide to presidential candidate John McCain, raked in $100,000, including more than $40,000 in checks cashed during the period's four final days from out-of-state backers and GOP-linked PACs.
Meanwhile, state Rep. Raul Labrador, a Republican from Eagle running against Ward in May's primary, brought in $33,000 in contributions and added a personal $50,000 loan to help make up for a late start to campaigning.
Minnick has $816,000 cash on hand after raising nearly $1.3 million total this election cycle. Ward has $207,000 in his coffers and Labrador has just over $82,000.
Minnick, a former executive with building-industry products maker Trus Joist, got about $102,000 of his total from political action committees including that of Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Hecla Mining Co. and Microsoft Corp., with the rest coming from individuals both in and out of Idaho.
He got $1,000 from Chris Kopczynski, a Spokane, Wash., construction company owner who was the ninth American to summit Mount Everest; $1,000 each from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Roy Eiguren, the Boise-based lobbyist from Amalgamated Sugar Co.; and $1,000 from John V. Evans, Jr., son of the former Democratic governor of Idaho.
For Ward, a U.S. Marine, a flurry of big checks, including from committees affiliated with GOP U.S. House members, arrived in the last few days of the reporting period to add more than $40,000 to his fundraising totals. In all, about $28,000 of Ward's money came from PACs, with the rest from individuals — including $400 this period from Jim and Faye Palin, father- and mother-in-law of ex-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
Ward also poached one of Minnick's supporters in 2008, real-estate broker George Iliff of Boise, for a $250 in-kind donation.
Labrador, a two-term state House member and an immigration lawyer, began fundraising only in mid-November and is playing catch-up against Ward.
Most of Labrador's $33,140 in receipts came from inside Idaho, including a $1,000 check from Reed DeMordaunt, a public education reform advocate from Eagle, Idaho; and $10,000 combined from three members of the Gersema family in Eagle that runs an outsourcing business.
Labrador also received $9,600 from a Salt Lake City couple, Timothy and Paula Barney. Timothy Barney is an investment manager and former executive at Energy Solutions Inc., a nuclear waste disposal company.