As 2020 contenders continue to fill their campaign coffers, a freshman lawmaker in Northwest Missouri is out-raising several statewide incumbent campaigns.
Despite not being on the ballot until 2022, Sen. Tony Luetkemeyer, R-Parkville, took in more money during the third quarter of this year than Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt, State Treasurer Ryan Fitzpatrick and Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft, all of whom are running for election next year.
Luetkemeyer hauled in $122,156 during the reporting period that ran from July through September. That number was more than double than what he already had in the bank before the fundraising quarter began. Comparatively, Schmitt brought in $97,486, Fitzpatrick raised $81,790 and Ashcroft showed $20,635 in contributions, according to a review of campaign finance data from the Missouri Ethics Commission.
Regardless of his third quarter numbers, Luetkemeyer’s total campaign war chest was just shy of those listed above minus Schmitt, who has more than $500,000 in cash-on-hand.
In response to a question regarding his prolific fundraising stretch, Luektemeyer said his focus is on getting re-elected to the Senate, not to seek a higher office.
“It’s for re-election to the Senate,” he told News-Press NOW. “My focus is serving the citizens of Platte and Buchanan counties.
“If I’m fortunate enough to have the voters entrust me to do that again for another four years I’m certainly planning on taking them up on the offer, so I’m raising resources to run for re-election to the Senate.”
Luetkemeyer’s fundraising spike comes as the private attorney was awarded Freshman Legislator of the Year by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce.
Another local lawmaker who received a similar award from the chamber also had a strong fundraising quarter.
Rep. Brenda Shields, R-St. Joseph, hauled in $9,800 in the third quarter. That is close to double the amount brought in by St. Joseph’s two other State Representatives. Rep. Bill Falkner raised $2,900, and Rep. Sheila Solon showed $2,500 in donations.
Shields also has much more money in the bank than the other representatives: $26,900 compared to Falkner’s $6,628 and Solon’s $5,377 in cash on hand.