Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The latest on campaign money in Manatee County

If dollars were votes, most of the local races on the Aug. 24 primary ballots might be over, as most races for the Manatee County commission or school board have a candidate collecting as much as 10 times more than their next-best funded rival.

The Manatee County elections office this week posted on its website the latest campaign finance reports from candidates in the local races. The reports cover fund-raising and spending from April 1 to July 16.

For a detailed look at who is contributing to the candidates and how they are spending the money, go here.

And remember that in an election, it's votes, not dollars, that determine the winner.

Manatee County Commission, District 2

Incumbent Democrat Gwen Brown has raised almost $56,000, and spent more than $18,000. Her Democratic challenger, Michael Gallen, has raised more than $15,000 and spent almost $4,000. No Republican is running in the race.

Manatee County Commission, District 4

Republican Robin DiSabatino continued her fund-raising prowess during the second quarter of the year, bringing her total to more than $115,000 in cash and in-kind contributions. She had spent more than $62,000 - about five times the amount spent by the three other candidates in the race combined.

The next most successful fund-raiser in the race, Norm Luppino, has raised more than $15,800 -- barely a tenth of what DiSabatino has raised -- and spent more than $8,900. The third Republican in the race, Tim Norwood, has raised almost $2,200 and spent more $1,700.

The winner of the Aug. 24 primary will face Democrat Roger C. Galle in the Nov. 2 general election. As of June 30, he had raised more than $3,200 and spent more than $1,700.

Manatee County Commission, District 6 (at-large)

Neither Republican incumbent Carol Whitmore nor Democratic challenger Sundae Lynn Knight has to worry about the primary, as they are set to face off in the general election. But already Whitmore has a huge financial advantage, raising almost $68,000 and spending almost $42,000.

Knight has raised more than $2,200 and spent less than a $1,000.

Manatee School Board, District 1

The financial disparities in two of the three school board races are less pronounced than for the county commission.

In District 1, incumbent Barbara Harvey has raised more than $6,100 and spent almost $5,300. Challenger David Bailey has raised more than $5,900 and spent almost $4,000.

Manatee School Board, District 3

Julie Aranibar has collected the bulk of the contributions in this race, raising more than $23,300 and spending almost $21,600.

Incumbent Jane Pfeilsticker has raised more than $6,700 and spent almost $3,300.

The third candidate in the race, Albert Yusko, has raised almost $3,900 and spent more than $3,700.

Manatee School Board, District 5

Financially, this may be the most competitive race in the county this year, with the two candidates raising and spending almost identical totals.

Karen Carpenter has raised more than $5,900 and spent more than $4,900.

Jennifer Radebach has raised more than $5,700 and spent almost $5,200.


  1. Special interest not voters own the commission. For example Waste Management dontated the maxium to Gwen Brown who votes on their garbage fees we all pay. Voters have no voice.

  2. When you look at the funds raised by Robin DiSabatino you have to wonder who she represents? When most of her funds come from district 5 not district 4. Who's intrests will she be working for? Where will here loyalities lie?

  3. Look at the source and that will be who gets things done for them. Robin is tied into Donna hayes and she has strong ties to development. The money in her campaign will represent the special interest that donated and not her district.
    Dump Brown, as stated, she likes Waste Management (Frank Brunners former employer). Waste Pros has my support as they are far better than Waste Management. Maybe there will be a job inline for Brown at WM when we remove her from office.

  4. Are you all crazy letting Gwen Brown back in office is a big mistake. She talks the talk but can't walk the walk. She teach's at SCF if you can call it that, she sit on her high horse and lets every one else do her job. She got bussed this time but how many other times did she get away with it. You will be doing Bradenton a big disjustice if you put her back in office. She talks about the young girls that are having babies, sit in one of her classes and hear how she talks " About all the low life's and loses in Bradenton". It's all about money for her, look and the property she rents it's not even up to code. GET RID OF HER AND BRADENTON MAY HAVE a CHANCE TO RECOVER FOR THE WRONG DOING SHE HAS DONE WHILE SITTING ON HER BUTT LETTING EVERY ONE ELSE DO HER JOB. Really rethink this voter's boot her OUT! Let someone else move able to clean up the mess she has made.

  5. Send her to work for Waste Management thats a good place for her!