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U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney widens money lead over Dem challenger Chris Craft

by George Bennett | January 30th, 2010

National Democrats are touting Chris Craft’s challenge of freshman Republican U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney of Tequesta as an “emerging” race this year.

But Craft has yet to emerge as a money-raising rival to the incumbent.

New Federal Election Commission reports show Rooney raised $288,060 during the fourth quarter of 2009 and began 2010 with $460,304 in cash on hand for his reelection bid. Craft, a St. Lucie County commissioner, raised $41,700 during the quarter and has $64,854 on hand.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee this month listed the Rooney-Craft race in Florida’s congressional District 16 as one of 26 “races to watch” for open or GOP-held seats. The list includes 17 “top races” and nine “emerging races.”

17 Responses to “U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney widens money lead over Dem challenger Chris Craft”

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  4. Dean Says:

    Craft is running a vanity campaign – his purpose is to generate name recognition for a future race for some seat he has a chance of winning. As such, Craft is wasting his contributors’ money for his own personal political agenda on a race he can’t win.

    And the Democratic party supports this foolishness because it forces the Republicans to expend resources on this race.

    Simply stated, on the Democratic side it represents the cynical political gamesmanship that has become tiresome. And it also represents the deeper poltitical divisiveness the Obama political machine is generating throughout this country.

    By the way, I’m a Dem.

  5. St Lucie Pol Says:

    Dean’s assessment is correct. Craft originally believed that wrapping himself in the Obama political cape would generate abundant contributions and therefore a lot of name recognition and even a remote possibility he could actually win the seat. However, because it’s been discovered the emperor has no cape, Craft has no money. His greatest name recognition will come from toilet stalls.

    Come November, Craft’s vanity race will backfire on him. He’ll be embarrassed by a huge loss and will forever be branded a political loser never to win again.

    Craft is not a bad guy but like many other politicians, political ego has corrupted his judgement and integrity.

  6. John Says:

    To be honest, Rooney’s ability to raise money is pathetic. A sitting Congressman should be able to raise at least 400k a quarter. Craft is a joke, as shown by the paltry 65k he’s raised. Rooney is extremley vulnerable, but Craft doesn’t have what it takes to beat him. The Dems should have found a better candidate who could raise money, because obviously Craft can’t. As for Craft’s campaign “vanity campaign”, Dean, I don’t understand. The guy isn’t lining himself up for anything with the way he’s raised money. He is lining himself up to be completely out of politics after this race. This is not just a poor showing, this is embaressing. If he wants to continue public life, he should probably drop out of this race, while he can still save some face. There are people running for State House who have raised more then him. Craft is running an abosolutely pathetic campaign, and has nothing to do with the Obama machine who obviously doen’t care about Craft or helping in anyway(where did that even come from?). If Obama involved Craft would have some money and would be getting press, neither of which he is getting. Simply put, the national Democrats don’t care about this race, bc Craft can’t raise any money and the obviously don’t see him as a good candidate. In their eyes, and mine, Craft is a complete joke. They couldn’t find anyone credible to run, so Craft got the job. Rooney having 400k shouldn’t scare anyone. That is a terrible number for an incumbent. It’s a joke. Rooney is safe bcof the Republican tide in the country, but if Craft had any ability to raise any real money he might have a chance. Everyone else who commented does not understand the reality of politics & campaigns today. Craft is a loser and making himself look worse, not better. In order to line yourself up for a future run, you need to at least make a respectable showing, and so far Craft has done one thing well; show everyone he’s not ready for the big time.

  7. jeff Says:

    400k is a joke for an incumbent. It’s a real shame the Democrats couldn’t find someone to either self-fund their campaign or at least someone with the ability to raise some real money. Rooney has never been able to raise money, the only reason he is in Congress is bc Tim Mahoney was an idiot. He can definitely be beat, unfortunately Craft can’t do it

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  9. Gerald Pisciottano Says:

    Where is the news about the differences between the candidates? The money thing is interesting but does it tell the people reading what a candidate has done for their constituents or what their challenger wants to do differently? I have heard Tom speak and he has a great head on his shoulders and knows what he is talking about. I hope we can get more representatives like that, be them from either party or no party. The politicians that are full of them selves need to be shown the door. The ones that seek to serve need to give people reasons to vote for them.

  10. Defying conventional wisdom, Dem challenger Craft pushes health care overhaul in GOP-leaning district | Post on Politics Says:

    [...] About Post On Politics Contact the bloggers Across Florida What’s happening on other political blogs? « U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney widens money lead over Dem challenger Chris Craft [...]

  11. PB County Pro Says:

    John, you say that Rooney’s money raising is pathetic for a sitting congressman. Well, let me advise you about Rooney and I’ll use Ron Klein as a comparison. Yes Rooney is a lousy fundraiser because he finds it painful to ask for money. Klein, on the other, is a prodigious fundraiser and almost twists your arm for money and is very forceful in asking.

    So please don’t equate fundraising ability with legislative ability or qualifications. In my 35 years of involvement in politics from the municipal to federal levels, I rate Tom Rooney #1 in honesty, purpose and willingness to listen to others.

  12. Jane Says:

    I know why Rooney is against Universal Health Care for Americans. They need the money to pay for the free hospitalization & care for Haitians and every other illegal non-taxpaying non-voting alien.
    Why is it that someone that does not pay taxes or vote have more free services offered to them?
    Please, Sen Rooney, explain that one!

  13. Defying conventional wisdom, Dem challenger Craft pushes health care overhaul in GOP-leaning district « South Florida Tea Party Says:

    [...] noted over the weekend, Rooney began 2010 with more than a 7-to-1 financial advantage over Craft. Craft is listed as one of the Democrats’ “recruiting duds” in a campaign money [...]

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  15. tas Says:

    I don’t know why Chris Craft has not raised more money, but I also don’t know a single thing Tom Rooney has done except back Republican obstructionism 100%. He is a very loyal Boehnerite. But my advice to Chris is this: if you want it, you gotta go out and work for it. He ain’t workin’ for it yet. And Dean – you sound a lot more like a web troll than a Dem. Guess I could claim to be a Republican, too!

  16. Gerald Pisciottano Says:

    Obstructionism, please. How about the FACT that a majority of US Citizens oppose the reforms being proposed? If that is obstructionism then we need more of it. The Republic is for which we stand (translation: representative government). Thank you Mr. Rooney for your representation!

  17. Plastic Ono Says:

    Way to go tas, attack those other trolls invading your territory! If you can’t logically dispute someone’s comments, then kick them in the balls.

    The reason Craft is not working hard is because (as Dean and others point out) he’s in it for name recognition. The Post is giving him plenty of free help, so why should he work for it? Actually, that sort of defines many democrats – let others do the work.

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