By Bobby Harrison/NEMS Daily Journal
JACKSON – Bill Luckett and Johnny DuPree, battling to win Tuesday’s Democratic gubernatorial runoff, were in a near dead-heat for fundraising for the past three weeks.
DuPree, mayor of Hattiesburg, raised $82,866 from July 24 through Saturday. Luckett, a Clarksdale attorney and businessman, raised $77,140 during the same period, according to campaign finance reports.
There was a mixup on whether the DuPree report was filed by the 5 p.m. deadline. A spokeswoman for the Secretary of State’s office said it has not been received. The DuPree campaign said it had been sent. The campaign supplied copies of the report to the media.
Luckett has spent $1 million for the year, $193,608 for the most recent reporting period and has cash on hand of $144,836. DuPree has spent $51,536 during the same time period and $481,716 for the year. He has cash on hand of $120,687.
The winner of Tuesday’s runoff will face Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant, the Republican nominee, in the November general election. Both DuPree and Luckett were campaigning Tuesday in Northeast Mississippi.
Only candidates in runoff elections were required to file reports Tuesday.
Two Republicans are in a runoff for treasurer. Both raised more than the Democratic candidates for governor.
Lynn Fitch, state Personnel Board director, reported raising $296,290 from July 24 through Saturday, but that included a $252,000 loan from her father, William Fitch of Holly Springs. He has made loans totaling $377,000 thus far this year. She spent $188,634 during the time period and has spent $535,726 for the year. She has $127,232 in cash.
State Sen. Lee Yancey of Brandon, who finished second to Fitch in the Aug. 2 primary had a strong fund-raising showing. He raised $107,225 and spent $82,155 for the reporting time period. He has spent $344,073 for the year and has $35,227 in cash.
The winner of Tuesday’s runoff will face Democrat Connie Moran, mayor of Ocean Springs, in November.