Mike Rawlings is Drowning in Cash, Bobby Abtahi Laps the Field, and Other Campaign Fundraising News

Mayor Mike Rawlings, in the chopper his campaign will soon be able to afford.
Yesterday was the deadline for state and local candidates to report their fundraising totals for the last six months of 2012, which meant a flurry of last-minute clicks on the City Secretary's website. The reported figures first real glimpse at candidates' fundraising prowess and a suggestion of which candidates are gaining traction leading up to the May 11 municipal elections. Here's what you need to know.

Rawlings has a lot of very wealth friends: Rumor has it that Mayor Mike Rawlings will not seek a second term. That didn't prevent him from stockpiling an eye-popping $391,440 from, as the Morning News' Rudy Bush put it, "the kind of folks you might meet at a really, really nice party in Preston Hollow."

Actually, Bush left out a "really." Rawlings' list of donors reads like a who's who of Dallas' business and civic elite: Ross Perot, Sr., Harold Simmons, T. Boone Pickens all gave generously. Local heavyweights like Ruth Althsuler Lucy Billingsley, Margaret McDermott also opened their wallets.

The question, of course, is what Rawlings needs all that money for. He gave himself $180,000 to repay loans he'd made to his campaign. For other answers, we'll just have to wait and see.

Bobby Abtahi raises more than his opponents -- combined: Former Plan Commissioner Bobby Abtahi turned in his fundraising totals a bit early, announcing in a press release that his campaign raised more than $60,000.

Turns out, he has reason to boast. Abtahi's total is more than double that of attorney Philip Kingston, who has Hunt's endorsement and pulled in $26,306.73. Third place went to Jim Rogers, who's been in the race since Hunt opted not to run for mayor in 2011 and formally announced his candidacy last week. He got $20,369.81. The laggard in the race is Greenland Hills Neighborhood Association president Judy Liimatainen, who managed to rake in a $2,000 loan. From herself.

Adam Medrano is still jogging: District 2 resident Herschel Weisfeld announced his intention to replace term-limited Councilwoman Pauline Medrano way back in September. His expected opponent was -- and still is -- Adam Medrano, Pauline's nephew. Problem is, he works for the city and would have to resign once he officially enters the race. So in lieu of filing official paperwork, his aunt has been dropping not-so-subtle hints, like this birthday card sent to constituents in September:

Thumbnail image for Pauline-Medrano-Birthday-Card.jpg

Weisfeld raised just shy of $10,000. Medrano, officially at least, has raised nada. The deadline for entering the race is March 1.

Other races: Jennifer Gates, aka Roger Staubach's daughter, pulled in $23,850 in her bid to replace Ann Margolin. That's a bit more than rival Leland Burk, who pulled in $19,474.55. And way more than perennial gadfly Richard Sheridan, who raised nada.

Former Park Board member Lee Kleinman, who is eying Linda Koop's District 11 seat, has an opponent in -- and was just barely outraised by -- Ori Raphael, a staffer for U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions.

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ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

The money that Mayor Mike has raised doesn't bother me at all, not even in the least.  At a minimum we do know who is backing him.

What really, really bothers me is the "annointing of successors" by the current officeholder who has to leave due to term limits.

Let me make this very plain, these are not hereditary seats.  You are not peerage.  You do not select your successor, we do.

People, if you truly want change in your city's government, then do not vote for these so called "annointed successors".  Do not vote for the incumbent.

Ignore the charges that the challenger is "not qualified" for the office.  Given the current state of affairs, a dead possum is preferable in my opinion to some of these so called "qualified candidates".

PS: Does anyone here remember a nice young lady from Oak Cliff by the name of Laura Miller?


"Ross Perot, Sr., Harold Simmons, T. Boone Pickens"...no wonder he wants to build a new inner-city gas refinery on the banks of the Trinity.


This city can be amusing. In politics simply connect the candidate to Park Cities or Preston Hollow money, and you know who will be elected or re-elected. Congratulations Mayor Rawlings on your next term, even if you were the worst of the two.


"Problem is, he works for the city and would have to resign once he officially enters the race."

Why?  Phyllis Lister Brown ran for district judge without having to resign her municipal judgeship due to winning her lawsuit against the city.  Sounds like, with a  well connected attorney, Medrano might win a lawsuit as well.

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