WASHINGTON – With nearly a year and a half until the next election, Republican U.S. Rep. John Kline’s re-election campaign is stepping up its fundraising early after national Democrats announced Kline would be a top target this election cycle and Kline’s challenger last year announced plans to make another try for the 2nd District U.S. House seat.
A Kline spokesman said the campaign raised $482,000 in the three month period ending June 30th, a record amount for Kline, and has $1.1 million in the bank. Kline has $750,000 cash at the end of the first quarter, a sign that the campaign’s expenses have been minimal and the focus is on stockpiling funds ahead of what could be an ad blitz by Democrats.
Kline’s challenger, former state Rep. Mike Obermueller, told Minnpost that he raised $130,000 in the second quarter and has $100,000 in the bank. The Obermueller campaign did not respond to requests for information about its fundraising.
With 6th District Republican Michele Bachmann stepping down from Congress, Kline’s 2nd District has the potential to be the most contested House campaign in Minnesota next year. Democrat-allied outside groups have already begun launching ads against the six-term lawmaker. Meanwhile, Republicans hope to contest the 7th District, represented by DFLer Collin Peterson and the 8th District where DFL U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan serves.