By ROGER ALFORD
Associated Press Writer
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Democratic gubernatorial candidate Steve Beshear took in an additional $77,000 over the past month for his primary election campaign and Gov. Ernie Fletcher another $6,000.
The money was collected even though the election was held more than two months ago.
The contributions raised Fletcher's total for the May 22 primary to $3,453,927 and Beshear's to $1,969,660, according to records the candidates filed Wednesday with the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance. Fletcher spent an additional $24,210 on lingering primary election expenses, increasing total disbursements for his primary race to $3,400,191. Beshear, according to the reports, spent an additional $51,572, raising total spending to $1,900,571.
Both Fletcher and Beshear have kept their primary election funds open, which allows them to continue collecting money for the primary election while at the same time soliciting contributions for the general election campaign.
Fletcher campaign spokesman Jason Keller said the governor's primary election fund is being kept open only temporarily "in the event any bills come in from the primary."
The Fletcher campaign reported a primary account balance of $53,735. Beshear reported $75,378 on hand.
Under state law, Fletcher and Beshear could continue to accept contributions for both the primary and general election campaigns. Keller said Fletcher won't do that.
"We're not actively fundraising into that account," Keller said.
Fletcher said Wednesday during an appearance in Louisville that "if anyone wants to contribute money that goes to the primary, they're more than welcome."
Beshear spokesman Robert Kellar said the Democratic candidate also will continue accepting contributions for the primary. The accounts can be closed later and rolled over to the general election fund.
Candidates are required under state law to file periodic campaign finance reports, including the latest one, which was due two months after the primary election.
Neither Fletcher nor Beshear have yet been required to file fundraising reports for their general election campaigns. The first of those reports will be due Oct. 10.
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)