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Democrat Mike Johnston raises more than $300,000 in second gubernatorial fundraising period

Author: Peter Marcus - July 17, 2017 - Updated: July 17, 2017

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Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Johnston, a former state senator from Denver, speaks with voters at a campaign event on Saturday, March 4, 2017, at Belmar Library in Lakewood. (Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman)
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Johnston, a former state senator from Denver, speaks with voters at a campaign event on Saturday, March 4, 2017, at Belmar Library in Lakewood. (Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman)

Former state Sen. Mike Johnston, a Democrat running for governor, is reporting raising more than $300,000 in his second fundraising period.

The haul builds off of an impressive first quarter for Johnston, who raised a record $625,000. With the first-quarter report, Johnston’s total fundraising is at just under $1 million, which is more than any non-incumbent Colorado candidate for governor has raised by this point in an election cycle, according to the campaign.

Johnston, from Denver, jumped into the race in January with the hopes of replacing Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper, who is term limited after next year.

Johnston is one of several Democrats running in a crowded primary field. The race was shaken up last week when U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter of Arvada announced that he would no longer seek the governor’s office.

Perlmutter’s departure leaves Johnston in the race along with U.S. Rep. Jared Polis of Boulder, Denver civics leader Noel Ginsburg, and former state Treasurer Cary Kennedy.

“We have been traveling the state building this grassroots movement, and our powerful fundraising numbers continue to prove that people are hungry for a leader who can build a bold vision for Colorado’s future and bridge the divides to get those big things done together,” Johnston said in a statement.

Reports are due to the state by the end of Monday. Johnston’s detailed campaign finance report was not immediately available on the secretary of state’s website.

Johnston’s campaign said he received contributions from residents in 43 of Colorado’s 64 counties. He received donations from nearly 1,200 individuals in the second quarter, with an average of $193 per contribution.

“My refusal to accept PAC money, and the fact that I cannot simply write a personal check to fund this campaign, places a premium on grassroots fundraising,” Johnston said. “So I am gratified to have so many small donors supporting our campaign, with more than 4,000 donations to date.”

It’s possible that the Democratic field for governor could grow, with Lt. Gov. Donna Lynne rumored as a candidate.

The Republican field for governor includes District Attorney George Brauchler, entrepreneur and former state Rep. Victor Mitchell, and investment banker Doug Robinson, who also happens to be Mitt Romney’s nephew.

The Republican field for governor is expected to grow with state Treasurer Walker Stapleton. Attorney General Cynthia Coffman is also seriously considering a run.

Peter Marcus

Peter Marcus

Peter Marcus is senior statehouse reporter for Colorado Politics. He covers the legislature and previously covered politics, the governor’s office, the legislature and Congress for The Durango Herald. He joined The Herald in 2014 from The Colorado Statesman, a Denver-based political weekly. The Washington Post twice named Marcus one of the nation’s top state-based political and legislative reporters.