PIERRE, S.D. — South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley’s campaign for governor topped other candidates last year with more than $1 million in fundraising, but his Republican primary opponent, U.S. Rep. Kristi Noem, ended 2017 with a heftier bank balance of more than $2.1 million.
State Senate Minority leader Billie Sutton, the lone Democrat in the race, raised more than $870,000 in cash and donated goods and services last year. Sutton closed out 2017 with about $664,000 on hand — the least of the top candidates — but he’s poised to conserve cash while Noem and Jackley campaign for the June primary election.
They are competing to replace outgoing Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard, who can’t run again this year because of term limits.
Marty Jackley for Governor reported raising roughly $947,000 in cash and donated goods and services in a year-end campaign finance report released Monday. His political action committee, Friends of Marty Jackley, brought in roughly $137,000 in cash and in-kind contributions last year. Jackley had over $1.6 million on hand between both accounts.
“The outpouring of support from across the state is humbling, and the fact that nearly all of our donations have come from South Dakota shows just how much momentum we have moving forward,” Jackley said in a statement.
His governor account received about $842,000 in contributions from individuals, while the PAC took in $69,000 in individual donations.
Noem’s campaign committee, Kristi for Governor, reported raising slightly more than $900,000 in the year-end report. The campaign reported spending about $566,000, leaving over $2.1 million in the bank.
“Thousands of people have contributed their hard-earned money, their precious time and their prayers to our campaign in the past year,” Noem said in a statement. “We are leading the race in cash on hand, and we plan to lead in votes and support on June 5th.”
She started the reporting period with roughly $1.8 million in the bank. Noem last week proposed an overhaul of South Dakota campaign finance rules, including barring corporate contributions, if elected.
Sutton’s haul included over $438,000 from individuals and $100,000 from former Democratic U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson’s campaign account.
“If you look at the history of candidates in our party, I’ve raised two-and-a-half times as much at this point in the race, which is very telling of the grassroots support that we have and the excitement about our campaign,” Sutton said. “My goals are to raise the money I need to win.”