Carlee Alm-LaBar is still ahead of Josh Guillory in raising funds for her race for Lafayette mayor-president. But the most recent campaign finance reports filed Wednesday show Guillory is raising more money now that the race is down to two candidates.
Alm-LaBar, no party, and Guillory, Republican, emerged from the Oct. 12 primary election as the top two vote-getters and head into a runoff Nov. 16.
Both have switched party affiliations in recent years. According to Lafayette Parish Registrar of Voters Charlene Meaux Menard, Alm-LaBar first registered to vote in Lafayette Parish in July 2000 at a Democrat. She changed to no party in June 2006.
Guillory first registered as a Republican in September 2003, Menard said. Guillory switched his voter registration to no party in July 2015, she said, then switched back to the Republican party in February 2016.
Campaign finance reports show, since Guillory emerged from the Oct. 12 election as the front runner and lone Republican, he has raised more than $215,500.
From April 18 through Oct. 11, the eve of the primary election, Guillory raised $109,137. In the final days before the primary, donations to Guillory's campaign increased, with 13 donations each of $2,500 between Oct. 4 and 9, totaling $32,500. They included contributions from some who had previously donated to Alm-LaBar.
In total, Guillory has raised more than $300,000.
Alm-LaBar was the first to enter the mayor-president's race, challenging incumbent Joel Robideaux, a Republican who switched from an Independent once elected to the state legislature. Shortly after Alm-LaBar announced her candidacy, Robideaux said he would not seek a second term. He would not provide a reason, but some speculate it was because he lost many supporters with a series of missteps, including secret discussions with Bernhard Capital Partners about potentially buying or managing Lafayette Utilities System. The City-Parish Council rejected the idea with a great deal of public support and even put a clause in the home rule charter saying voters would have to decide such a move.
As a result of her early entry into the race, Alm-LaBar got a head start raising money. Donations slowed after the Oct. 12 election, when she came in second behind Guillory.
Campaign finance reports show Alm-LaBar has raised around $70,000 since the Oct. 12 primary, compared with Guillory's $215,000. But before the primary election, Alm-LaBar far outpaced her four opponents in raising funds. Campaign finance reports show from March 14 through Sept. 2 she raised more than $270,000. She added more than $90,000 to that from Sept. 23 through Oct. 11, for a total exceeding $400,000.
Early voting continues for the Nov. 16 election from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Lafayette Parish Registrar of Voter's Office, 1010 Lafayette St.