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Carl, Coleman build big cash advantages in AL-01, AL-02

Candidates running in Alabama’s two open 2020 congressional races have now filed their FEC finance reports covering the third quarter of 2019, with one Republican candidate in each competitive field standing out when it comes to cash-on-hand.

In Alabama’s First Congressional District, the seat to be vacated by Congressman Bradley Byrne’s (R-Fairhope) U.S. Senate bid, former State Senator Bill Hightower (R-Mobile) technically led in Q3 fundraising.

Hightower raised $173,482 and spent $92,918 in the quarter, for an ending cash-on-hand of $447,611. Hightower has been endorsed by the Club for Growth in this race.

However, Mobile County Commissioner Jerry Carl brought in more total funds in the quarter and finished with significantly more money in the bank.

Carl raised $155,866 in Q3, loaned himself another $100,000, spent $55,257 and was left with $741,307 cash-on-hand.

In a statement to Yellowhammer News, Carl said, “I’m humbled by the outpouring of support from voters all over south Alabama. Over 95% of our money was raised from folks in Alabama’s 1st Congressional District. I’m proud to report that we are in an excellent position to win the Republican primary on March 3, 2020.”

Next, State Rep. Chris Pringle (R-Mobile) raised $91,680 in the quarter. He also spent $70,058, ending the period with $215,437 available.

Local businessman Wes Lambert only raised $9,935. However, he gave himself $5,000 and loaned himself another $110,000. Lambert spent $17,355 in Q3 and reported having $109,579 remaining in his campaign account.

Moving on to Alabama’s Second Congressional District, there was a decisive victor in both fundraising and cash-on-hand at the end of the third quarter.

Businessman and former Business Council of Alabama Chairman Jeff Coleman blew people away with a strong finance report.

Coleman actually raised more money in contributions than any of the Republican U.S. Senate candidates in the same quarter: $468,001.

He also loaned his campaign $500,000. Coleman spent just $2,973 in Q3, ending it with $965,027 on hand.

In a statement, Coleman said, “We are proud to report a robust figure that epitomizes the hard work of our team and the unwavering commitment of Alabamians to defending this seat. Liberals are focused on this district, and we know they plan to use the ‘Doug Jones’ model: divide Republicans and parade in an army of special interests from Planned Parenthood and labor unions to buy the seat.”

“With this strong quarter, we’re going to send a powerful message to Washington Democrats that this seat is off-limits,” he concluded.

Former Alabama Attorney General Troy King, who is currently leading sizably in polls due to his high name identification in the district, raised $102,742 in the quarter.

King spent a mere $371, finishing with $102,370.

“I am continually humbled by the support I am receiving from all across District 2. I attribute our success to the fact that many who live there have known and stood with me for a long time now. As a lifelong Republican, a native son of the Wiregrass, and a longtime resident of Montgomery, the folks in this district are like family to me. I understand them and those things that matter to them better than anyone else in this race,” King said in a statement. “I have been overwhelmed with the messages of encouragement I have received. Alabamians are ready to send a fighter to represent them and they are saying so with their support.”

“I have a strong career of standing with the little guy,” he added. “If you are tired of the crazies who have been running Washington DC, you can do something about it. Join me and let’s put an end to left wing control of our government.”

Former State Rep. Barry Moore (R-Enterprise) was not far behind King’s fundraising total, raising $70,822. He also loaned himself an additional $70,000.

Moore spent $12,732, closing the quarter with $128,089.

State Rep. Will Dismukes (R-Prattville) raised $14,693 in Q3, spent $7,033 and reported $7,659 left cash-on-hand.

Both races are expected to add a candidate in this quarter, the final one of 2019.

John Castorani, an Army veteran and career intelligence officer, on Tuesday announced his candidacy in AL-01.

Jessica Fair Taylor of Prattville is expected to announce a bid in AL-02 in the coming days.

Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn