1/17/12 6:00 AM EST Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu raised $263,302 during the fourth fundraising quarter for his Arizona congressional run, an impressive haul that may top Rep. Paul Gosar's sum.
Babeu, who found himself in a primary with the freshman Republican when Gosar decided to run in the new 4th Congressional District, will report $235,072 on hand, according to numbers shared first with POLITICO.
The Babeu campaign stresses the fundraising total includes just "68 days of exploring, without a district . . . without a single fundraising event."
"This from 1,100 donors. About 300 of these are new. The sheriff has over 8,000 unique donors, which represents an enormous existing fundraising base yet to be tapped for the congressional race," said Babeu adviser Chris DeRose.
Gosar, who has not yet released his fundraising report, took in $200,000 last quarter and reported $235,371 on hand.
The first-term freshman recently lost a consultant amid more reports of "turmoil and drama" within his staff. A spokeswoman told POLITICO last week the congressman did not think it was appropriate to solicit campaign funds during the holidays.