Masterson cash up, but still not enough to catch Hopson’s|[08/01/07]

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Although attorney W. Briggs Hopson III remained the overall top recipient of campaign cash, a rival for the state District 23 Senate seat did some catching up during July.

Rep. Chester Masterson reported $17,349 in donations in July on periodic reports due in the secretary of state’s office Tuesday.

That doubled the total Hopson reported for the month.

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Overall, however, in race for the seat being vacated by Sen. Mike Chaney, Hopson has outpaced opponents more than 2 to 1 in campaign contributions and spending, with over $77,610 raised and $45,000 in spending.

Masterson, who is vacating his House seat to seek the Senate seat, has taken in $34,451 thus far. His report shows that contributions included a $10,000 donation from himself, as well as $5,000 from the Mississippi Medical Political Action Committee. Masterson is a retired physician.

James &#8220Buddy” Terrell, Hopson and Masterson face off on Republican ballots Tuesday. If one gets more than half the votes, he advances to face Democrat Eric Rawlings in the Nov. 6 general election. If no one gets more than half the votes, there will be a runoff two weeks later.

Terrell said he knew all along he couldn’t match the spending of the others. He stated on his report his campaign is being self-financed, and that his disbursements to date have been $6,623.

Though Masterson’s July earnings topped the $7,700 contributed to Hopson’s campaign, Masterson’s campaign spent $2,209 in July, compared with Hopson’s $18,863. Masterson’s campaign disbursements thus far total $18,153 compared to Hopson’s $45,140.

Hopson’s campaign has been helped by donations from W.B. Hopson Jr., The Heidelberg Group, April Payne Nall Investment Trust, Fred Farrell and Mike Cappaert.

In the one local race to be decided Tuesday, incumbent District 3 Supervisor Charles Selmon edged out James Stirgus Jr. in campaign spending so far, with $3,734 in expenditures to Stirgus’ $2,594.

Both are Democrats and Tuesday’s winner will have no opposition in November.

So far, Stirgus has raised $4,815 to Selmon’s $3,250. Selmon reported no contributions in the most recent reporting period, with Stirgus reporting $1,475 in donations between July 1 and July 28.

Selmon’s major donors were Douglas Busari and Steve Golding. Stirgus itemized no donations.

District 1 Supervisor David McDonald’s re-election campaign has taken in slightly more than his challenger for the Republican nomination, John Arnold. Arnold has received $7,340, and spent $6,647. McDonald has totaled $7,489, with $3,746 in spending.

In this period, Arnold reported $1,200 in contributions. McDonald reported $600 taken in.

The winner will face independents Tony Ford and Margaret Gilmer in the general election.

In the race for District 2 supervisor, only the incumbent William Banks filed a finance report. His opponent for the Democratic nomination, Michael Gates, had no contributions or expenditures in the last report he filed.

The winner will face independent Tommie Rawlings in the general election.

Only one of the candidates for District 5 supervisor filed reports Tuesday. Robert L. Hubbard, running as an independent, reported no donations and no expenditures this period. Joe Wooley and James W. McCoy will face each other for the Republican nomination for District 5 Tuesday. As of the last reporting period, Wooley had spent $523 and McCoy $383.

The winner will face incumbent Richard George, independent, and independents Hubbard and Kenneth Sharp Jr, and Democrat Frank Gardner in November.

Democrat Glenn McKay reported spending $540 and contributions of $100 in his run for Northern District constable against independent Eddie Hoover, who did not file.

Democrat Richard &#8220Ricky” Smith, candidate for district attorney, reported donations of $5,119 and no money spent to date on his campaign. Independent incumbent Gil Martin had not filed. As of his last report, filed July 10, Martin had contributions of $5,750 and disbursements of $5,231.

Rep. George Flaggs Jr., D-Vicksburg, campaigning to keep the District 55 House seat, has raised $18,179 thus far, including $3,000 this month, and will face Republican Rick McAlister in the November election. McAlister showed $422 in contributions and $402 in disbursements through June 30.

Flaggs’ re-election campaign has spent $8,991, $1,828 of it in July. His largest donors are H.L.R. Service Corporation of New Jersey, Vicksburg Insurance Agency, BellSouth Employees of Mississippi political action committee, Mississippi Realtors, the Electric Power Associations of Mississippi political action committee and the Mississippi Malt Beverage political action committee.

In the District 54 race for state representative, Republican candidates Ryan Sadler and Alex Monsour have both raised over $39,000 as they head into the primary. Monsour spent $30,374 in July, with disbursements at $38,916 and July contributions of $9,000, bringing his campaign’s total to $42,728.

Sadler, who spent $14,351 in July, was helped by a $1,000 contribution from the Mississippi Dental political action committee.

Monsour, who has contributed $35,000 to his own campaign, gave himself a donation of $8,000 in June. His campaign has received donations from Robert Amborn, Alex and Linda Kitchens and Tony and Angela Jordan.

The winner will face Democrat Jennifer Thomas and Independent Tom Setser in the general election.