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Minnesota GOP party raises $706,000 in first quarter

The party’s early-2014 report also shows $75,000 cash-on-hand while another filing revealed $758,000 in continuing debt.

The Republican Party of Minnesota reports $706,000 first-quarter 2014 income and $75,000 cash on hand. The state GOP is one of the first campaigns or parties to hit an April 15 deadline.

“We are doing pretty well,” said MnGOP party chair Keith Downey.  “We are well funded for what we’re trying to do.”

Downey says that to-do list has three priorities: advancing strong candidates, building Election Day infrastructure and “delivering a more compelling message.  These are three areas, frankly, we got beat at in 2012.”

The Republican Party is also got beat on fundraising.  At the end of the 2013, the DFL Central Committee reported nearly $100,000 cash-on-hand from $2 million-plus in annual contributions.

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GOP overhead was higher due to debt repayment from the 2010 cycle. The party reported $753,800 in a March 20 filing with the Federal Elections Commission.  Downey also noted upfront costs from a move into new Minneapolis headquarters.

Moving forward, Downey said that the party will be spending more on outreach, “listening to constituents, presenting our message in a way that people understand has a direction connection to their lives.”   

However, expect Republicans to use a portion of the party’s funds to aggressively raise integrity questions about their opponents. With Gov. Mark Dayton, Sen. Al Franken, and the House of Representatives up for re-election, Downey was clear the party will seize upon the mistakes in MNcare and controversies  such as the new Senate office building and Dayton’s medical marijuana statements:  “We will ask, ‘Can the Democrats be trusted?’”