Republican Has Comical Cash Lead in Pennsylvania Attorney General Race
According to a campaign financial reports (the latest numbers of which come from May 14), Republican Attorney General candidate David Freed has a $440,000 to $2,000 lead over Democratic opponent Kathleen Kane.
And yet, according to the latest Public Policy Polling numbers, Kane leads Freed 42 percent to 33 percent. Both candidates are prosecutors and both maintain their reason for running is not political. Although the position is well known for creating Pennsylvania governors.
The lead which may not say much this early in the game, except that Pennsylvania historically likes Republican Attorneys General. As PW noted during the Democratic primary, since Pennsylvania began holding elections for the position in 1980, “exactly zero Democrats have held the post.”
Part of the reason for the disparity (perhaps for both cash and poll numbers) is that Kane faced a tough, well-publicized election battle with former Congressman Patrick Murphy, where she spent about $2 million, most of which came from loans from her family. Freed, of course, was unopposed. Kane was endorsed by former President Bill Clinton during the primary.
Which might mean one thing: If you can stare at television commercials during Jeopardy! this election season for more than two minutes without your eyeballs bleeding all over the floor, you’re likely in for more than just presidential Super PAC sick shots from afar. It’s likely this AG race will get just as ugly and as with all statewide races, the Philadelphia metro area (even if not Philadelphia itself) will become pretty damn important. And not just for the candidates.
As noted by PoliticsPA, “Most GOP politicos agree that this office is the top priority of Governor (and former AG) Tom Corbett.” Freed’s largest contribution thus far has come from a political committee headed by MontCo-based former national GOP committeeman Robert Asher, who was convicted of perjury, racketeering, conspiracy and bribery in 1987 and served a year in federal prison. Asher’s co-defendant in the case, Pennsylvania Treasurer Budd Dwyer, was not so lucky: He committed suicide via gunshot to the head in 1987 during a televised press conference in Harrisburg.