Gov. Kristi Noem attends an event Oct. 12, 2022, at a Sioux Falls grocery store. (John Hult/SD Searchlight)
Republican Gov. Kristi Noem leads her Democratic challenger Jamie Smith by a wide margin – at least in terms of cash on hand.
That’s one takeaway from the release of campaign finance reports for South Dakota political candidates on Monday, the deadline for pre-election disclosures.
Noem started the reporting period in May with nearly $7.8 million and took in another $3.1 million in cash and in-kind donations. Her campaign spent about $4.7 million, leaving her with $6.16 million in cash on hand.
Smith, whom the Noem camp accused of campaign finance violations for failure to list the addresses of individual donors, is moving into the final stretch of the Nov. 8 general election with a significantly smaller war chest. The Smith campaign has just $255,000 on hand.
The Democratic challenger began the reporting period with about $110,000 and collected $955,000 in cash and in-kind contributions.
After spending $735,000, his cash-on-hand tally was the third highest for any major party candidate seeking a statewide, state-level office. The candidate in the second position is Republican Marty Jackley, the lone choice on Nov. 8 for attorney general, a post he previously held but vacated to challenge Noem in the GOP primary in 2018. Jackley added another $65,000 in cash and in-kind donations to the $300,000 he had in May and spent less than $35,000, leaving the unopposed candidate with more than $330,000.
Here’s a breakdown of where the other major party candidates stood as of Monday evening.
Campaign finance reports for all races and ballot question committees are accessible through the South Dakota Secretary of State’s Campaign Finance Reporting System.
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