Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser reported Monday he has $1 million in his campaign account for a challenge to Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne’s re-election bid — half of it personal funds.
Dardenne has some $524,000 in the bank as campaign season prepares to move into full swing leading up to the Oct. 22 primary election. All of Dardenne’s funds came from donors.
Nungesser and Dardenne are both Republicans.
The information is reflected in reports candidates for statewide office were required to file Monday with the state ethics agency.
The latest financial activity reports cover candidate campaign contributions and expenditures from April 16 to July 14.
All seven Republican statewide officials filed reports as well as some of their potential challengers — whether announced or not.
Other than the governor, state Treasurer John Kennedy had the most money in the bank as he seeks a fourth term: nearly $1.9 million.
Kennedy raised a quarter million dollars in the latest reporting period. Kennedy has no announced challenger.
Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon had $619,470 in cash on hand, raising about $133,000 of it in the last reporting period.
Attorney General Buddy Caldwell’s campaign account held $479,700 available for a re-election bid, about $50,000 raised in the most recent reporting period.
Former U.S. Rep. Anh Joseph Cao, R-New Orleans, has filed papers with campaign finance officials, indicating he will be a candidate for attorney general. As of late Monday, Cao had not filed a report showing any campaign financial activity.
Louisiana Senate President Joel Chaisson II, D-Destrehan, reported raising money for an as yet undisclosed statewide race on the Oct. 22 primary election ballot.
Chaisson, a lawyer, has been mentioned as a potential challenger to Democrat-turned-Republican Caldwell.
Chaisson raised $21,500 during the period and had $138,700 in cash on hand.
Chaisson did not return a phone call seeking comment.
Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain’s report showed $431,383 in the bank — $250,000 of it a new personal loan to the campaign.
Dardenne had to restart fundraising after using most of his campaign account in a runoff against Democrat Caroline Fayard for the remainder of Democrat Mitch Landrieu’s term as lieutenant governor.
Landrieu won election as New Orleans mayor.
“I’m used to having a well-financed, self-funded opponent in races I’ve had,” Dardenne said about Nungesser’s current money edge.
“I’m very comfortable with where we are. … We raised $1.8 million last year, and we are on pace to hit that $1.8 million,” said Dardenne, who won a 2010 special election for the No. 2 spot in state government.
Dardenne raised $447,600 to Nungesser’s $286,760 during the reporting period. Most of Nungesser’s contributions are from the New Orleans area.
Nungesser could not be reached for comment through his office and his spokeswoman. In a statement, Nungesser said he was “humbled by the broad base of support” he is getting.
The latest reports reveal that Secretary of State Tom Schedler, a Republican, raised $79,450 in recent months and had $171,150 in cash on hand as he seeks election. Challenger state Rep. Walker Hines, a Republican, raised $62,925 and had $205,700.