State Treasurer Dean Martin submitted his $5 qualifying contributions for Clean Elections funding, filling his near-empty war chest and easing criticism over his campaign’s slow start.
Still, the filing was a stinging reminder that this may be all the money Martin’s going to get. The U.S. Supreme Court decided to halt matching funds, eliminating any chance for Martin to receive money to match the spending of millionaire Buz Mills.
Martin on June 15 submitted 5,354 contributions of $5 each, according to the Secretary of State’s Office. Publicly funded gubernatorial candidates need 4,410 contributions to qualify for Clean Elections funding.
Martin has run a low-budget campaign since jumping into the governor’s race in January. Campaign manager Renee Roebuck, however, said Martin is getting his $707,000 in Clean Elections funding at exactly the right time.
“People don’t focus on the actual election until a month out, and that’s exactly where we want it to be.” Roebuck said. “Now we have money in the bank when everybody else has definitely been spending.”
Gov. Jan Brewer, whom Martin is trying to unseat in the Republican primary, qualified for Clean Elections money in February. Campaign spokesman Doug Cole said the campaign has spent less than $100,000, but wouldn’t give a more precise number.
The Martin campaign’s new wealth is bringing new staff. Several days before submitting his qualifying contributions, Martin hired the consulting firm Lincoln Strategy Group to help run his campaign.