The Kentucky Senate race is shaping up to be the top money race in the nation.
Within minutes of each other on Friday afternoon, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes announced their large fourth quarter hauls: $2.2 million for McConnell and $2.1 million for the Democrat running to unseat him.
McConnell, who has been building his warchest for years, has a substantial cash on hand advantage. The minority leader is sitting on a staggering $10.9 million, while Grimes’s campaign says she has “almost” $3.5 million. Still, while Grimes can focus on the general election, McConnell also a primary challenge to contend with. Tea partier Matt Bevin has nowhere near the cash McConnell does, but he did raise nearly $900,000 in the fourth quarter — nothing to sneeze at — and will have some outside group help as well.
Only two other sitting senators hit the $2 million mark last quarter, and no other challengers did so.