The Peak has learned that Aurora mayoral candidate Ryan Frazier has raised $125,000 since entering the race in May. In addition to their sizable fundraising haul, Frazier's campaign has also commissioned a poll with Magellan Strategies that shows Frazier with a double digit lead over the rest of the competition. This is good news for a campaign that got a later start in the race than many of its top rivals.
Frazier's campaign says they had over 200 donors, meaning most donors wrote large checks to the campaign. There is a $25,000 donation limit in the race, allowing for a few donors to help underwrite the majority of the campaign.
Steve Hogan’s campaign has also demonstrated major fundraising chops, announcing they had raised $125,000 by mid-June, a fact that will give Hogan more than enough resources to compete.
It is not known how much he has raised since then. Campaign finance reports were due today, so we should know the fundraising hauls of all campaigns soon.
In the Magellan poll, an autodial survey with 642 respondents, Frazier garners the support of 27% of respondents, with Steve Hogan in second with 14% and Defector Debbie Stafford third with 11%. No other candidate polls over 4%. There is no run-off in the Aurora mayor's race, unlike Denver, meaning a candidate only needs a plurality of support to win.
As the poll was paid for by the Frazier campaign there will inevitably be questions about its accuracy from other camps. But Magellan is a nationally known and respected pollster, so it more than likely gives a very good snapshot of where the race is today.
While the lead is substantial, it is early in the race and no TV or radio advertising has been done by any campaign.
Still, the Frazier campaign is feeling confident about their position.
Frazier Campaign Manager Michael Fields tells the Peak:
"With six candidates in the race now, there is no doubt that this is going to be a competitive election. Given the financial numbers and the data, evidence suggests that our campaign is getting stronger each and every day."
Frazier's lead can partially be traced to his significantly higher name ID with the electorate. 71% of respondents had heard of Frazier, compared to 57% for Hogan, 48% for Stafford, and only 29% for Jude Sandvall.
In a bad sign for Debbie Stafford's attempt to win by gaining the support of the majority of Democrats, Frazier is beating Stafford 18-13 among Democrat respondents. Among GOP voters, Frazier takes 35%, Hogan 14%, and Stafford 9%. Jude Sandvall, who is running a door-to-door grassroots campaign, gets 5% of GOP respondents.
The crosstabs from the Magellan Poll also reveal a geographic split in support.
Hogan leads Frazier 21-20 in North Aurora, his strongest area. But in East Aurora, Hogan only registers 8% support to Frazier's 31%. Stafford's strongest area is central Aurora, where she gets 18%.
Frazier's strength in the poll is that he polls above 20% in every region, whereas his two closest competitors, Hogan and Stafford, see significant swings among the regions, with both in single digits in some areas. This advantage is partially due to name ID, as Frazier's Congressional campaign aired hundreds of thousands of dollars of ads across the city of Aurora last fall.
While Frazier's Congressional campaign has given him significant advantages in name ID and fundraising capacity, the advantages are not insurmountable. His lead in the poll, while large, is not enough to call it overwhelming.
One thing is for sure with Frazier's fundraising numbers and polling lead — he is the front runner. With that status comes attacks from every campaign and increased scrutiny from the press.
Keep checking back at the Peak for continuing coverage of the Aurora mayor's race.