GOP gov candidate Allan Fung says campaign raised $175,000 last fall

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Republican gubernatorial candidate Allan Fung said Thursday his campaign raised about $175,000 in the final three months of 2017, with the vast majority of the cash coming from donors who live in Rhode Island.

Fung, the four-term mayor of Cranston and the GOP’s 2014 nominee for governor, made the announcement ahead of next Wednesday’s deadline for candidates to file their fourth-quarter campaign-finance reports with the Board of Elections. He said he was “thrilled” with the numbers, describing it as a “very strong fundraising” effort.

“These numbers show that we have the support of Rhode Islanders and the momentum in this campaign, and we will continue the push for reform that Rhode Island so desperately needs,” Fung said, adding that he received contributions from 272 new donors during the quarter.

Fung’s campaign said the fourth-quarter results brought his fundraising for all of 2017 to about $380,000. Fung’s campaign said it finished the year with about $239,000 in cash on hand, slightly more than it had on Sept. 30, following a post-kickoff TV ad buy and other initial spending.

Fung is facing at least two potential challengers in the September GOP primary. One of them, House Minority Leader Patricia Morgan, said Thursday she found raising money in the final three months of 2017 had been “more challenging because of the holidays.” Another, businessman Giovanni Feroce, has not yet set up a campaign account.

The eventual Republican nominee is expected to face incumbent Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo, though she herself could face multiple challengers in the September primary including former Gov. Lincoln Chafee. Raimondo had stockpiled more than $3 million for her re-election effort as of last September – a huge amount in tiny Rhode Island.

Fung took a shot at Raimondo’s fundraising in his statement Thursday, saying he “will continue to focus on hard-working Rhode Islanders and their needs – not those of out-of-state special interests just trying to get the next handout from the Commerce Corporation.”

Ted Nesi (tnesi@wpri.com) covers politics and the economy for WPRI.com. He is a weekly panelist on Newsmakers and hosts Executive Suite. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook