Capitol Alert

Padilla has big financial edge in secretary of state’s race

State Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles, had a 17-to-1 cash-on-hand advantage at the end of June over educator and institute director Pete Peterson, Padilla’s Republican opponent in the race to succeed termed-out Secretary of State Debra Bowen.

Padilla and Peterson finished atop an eight-person field in the June 3 primary election. Taking third place was state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, who had been viewed as Padilla’s main Democratic rival before his arrest in late March on corruption and gun-running charges and his subsequent withdrawal from the campaign.

Padilla raised $425,692 from May 18 through June and spent almost $364,000, with $383,612 cash on hand and $28,000 in debt, his campaign filing shows. Padilla will have to put his fundraising on hold during August, when state senators are covered by a fundraising ban during the end of session.

Padilla’s top expense during the filing period was TV and cable airtime, with $144,000 spent on ads during the filing period. Overall, his campaign spent $764,000 on TV ads, records show.

Peterson raised $48,758, spent $26,655 and had almost $22,000 cash on hand at the end of June, his filing shows, with campaign had debts totalling $85,203. His top campaign expense was consultants, with $110,000 spent.