WASHINGTON — Republican Markwayne Mullin, aided by GOP allies and business interests, raised twice as much campaign cash as Democrat Rob Wallace in the first two weeks of October and surged past him in total spending in the homestretch of the 2nd District congressional race.
Mullin, of Westville, raised $160,000 between Oct. 1 and 17, with $64,540 of that from political action committees, several tied to Republican lawmakers including Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Muskogee, and Reps. Tom Cole, R-Moore, and Frank Lucas, R-Cheyenne.
Mullin also received contributions from the political action committees of ExxonMobil, Chevron, AT&T, the National Restaurant Association and the tax and accounting company Ernst & Young.
Mullin's spending for the race neared $1.4 million through Oct. 17, and he had $115,496 left in his account, according to the latest campaign finance report filed with the Federal Election Commission.
Mullin and Wallace are vying for the eastern Oklahoma seat of retiring Rep. Dan Boren, of Muskogee, the only Democrat in Oklahoma's congressional delegation.
Wallace has kept pace with and even surpassed Mullin's fundraising in some periods in the past year. But Mullin raised more from individuals and political action committees at the start of October.
Wallace has been virtually ignored by the national Democratic Party, even though the district is overwhelmingly Democratic in registration. He did get a $2,500 donation this month from Rep. Steny Hoyer, of Maryland, the second-ranking Democrat in the House. And he got more help from organized labor, a traditional party ally.
Wallace raised $74,420 in the first two weeks of October, raising his total for the election to $1.1 million. He has spent nearly $1 million in the past year, and he had about $123,000 left in his account Oct. 17.
In the Tulsa-area District 1 congressional race, Republican Jim Bridenstine raised nearly $79,000 in the first two weeks of October, with $48,600 coming from GOP organizations and interest groups. Bridenstine, who upset Rep. John Sullivan in the GOP primary, had $89,000 left in his campaign account Oct. 17.
Democrat John Olson banked $62,568 in the latest period and had nearly $57,000 left. Like Wallace, Olson has gotten no help from the national Democratic Party but has collected nearly $263,000 in total for his race in a district held by Republicans for decades.