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Less cash this year in state legislative races


What a difference two years make.

With less than a month until the Nov. 6 state legislative races, Legislature candidates in the north country have raised much less cash than they had at the same point in 2010, a result of less competitive races. Incumbents — favored in every race — significantly outraised opponents.

The race for a state Senate seat provides the most obvious example.

At this point in 2010, then-St. Lawrence County Clerk Patricia A. Ritchie had raised $90,543 and spent $98,167. In the same period this year, Mrs. Ritchie, a freshman Republican legislator from Heuvelton, has raised $39,235 and spent $32,708. She has $115,757 in the bank, able to be deployed. But it has gone relatively untouched, and it’s not clear whether the campaign will air television ads — sometimes an expensive proposition that played a role in the 2010 race.

The $39,235 haul since July put Mrs. Ritchie in 32nd place among Republicans in the state Senate, out of 42 candidates who have raised more than $1,000.

But she still far outraised her Democratic opponent, Oswego County Legislator Amy M. Tresidder. Mrs. Tresidder has raised $13,609 since July, and spent $14,145. She has $15,809 in the bank.

Compare that with Mrs. Tresidder’s electoral predecessor, former state Sen. Darrel J. Aubertine of Cape Vincent. In Mr. Aubertine’s unsuccessful re-election campaign against Mrs. Ritchie, he raised $125,412 and spent $233,938 in the run-up to the last month of the campaign.

Of the money that Mrs. Ritchie raised, $11,453 came from individuals, mostly residents in the Senate district she represents. She took in $3,175 from corporate donors, including several agricultural organizations such as vineyards and Monsanto Co. Groups, such as political organizations and committees, gave her $20,875, including $10,000 from the campaign committee of state Sen. Elizabeth O’C. Little, R-Queensbury, who doesn’t have an opponent.

Mrs. Tresidder took in $10,370 from individuals and partnerships, also mostly from within the Senate district she’s running to represent. She took in $700 from corporate donors, and $1,539 from political organizations.

State Sen. Joseph A. Griffo, R-Rome, does not have an opponent. He raised $18,006 and spent $32,936 from July to October, and had $255,627 in the bank leading up to his re-election. Of the money Mr. Griffo spent, $25,000 was donated to the Senate Republican Campaign Committee, the political arm of the Senate Republican majority.

Mrs. Little, whose new district includes a large swath of eastern St. Lawrence County, raised $31,149 and spent $81,886, leaving her with $260,726. Much of the money that she spent went to fellow Republican candidates’ campaigns for public offices.

Assemblyman Marc W. Butler, a Newport Republican, raised $15,440 and spent $14,858 from July to October. He has $4,691 to spend. That outpaces his Nov. 6 opponent, Joseph Chilelli, a Democrat of Herkimer, who raised $1,845, spent $199 and had $1,845 left over. The district now cuts into much of rural St. Lawrence County.

Assemblywoman Janet L. Duprey, R-Peru, had $33,312 in her bank account after her Sept. 13 primary victory over Karen M. Bisso. Mrs. Bisso, who continues her campaign on the Conservative Party line, had $3,441. Timothy R. Carpenter, a Plattsburgh Democrat, has $250 to spend.

Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell, D-Theresa, who doesn’t have an opponent, has $9,618 in the bank after raising and spending about $7,000 from July to October. Assemblyman Kenneth D. Blankenbush, R-Black River, has $14,584 in his campaign account after raising $2,361 and spending $5,376. Assemblyman William A. Barclay, R-Pulaski, whose district will include Ellisburg in 2013, had $91,193 on hand after raising $4,700 and spending $10,858.

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