Final price tag on 2014 election: $34M

The final numbers are in: The 2014 election cost state candidates and the political groups that back them nearly $34 million.

Candidates for governor, the Legislature and other state offices spent $17.7 million on their campaigns, while independent expenditure groups that can back one or several candidates at once but can’t coordinate with them spent $16 million, according to a new report from the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board, which tracks campaign money.

Minnesota House races were particularly expensive. For instance, the race between Rep. Jim Knoblach, R-St. Cloud, and his predecessor Zach Dorholt cost roughly $961,000, with nearly all that money coming from outside political groups.