John P. McKinney
John P. McKinney The CT Mirror

The Republican ticket of John P. McKinney and David M. Walker said Friday that an initial review of its application for public financing by the State Elections Enforcement Commission has raised questions about just $4,600, leaving them with hopes of still winning approval next week.

A gubernatorial campaign must submit $250,000 in qualifying contributions of no more than $100 each to obtain public financing, and each must be accompanied by paperwork detailing each donor’s name, home address and employer.

“This morning we received a report that the SEEC review of our application for grant funding will only require follow-up on about $4,600 in contributions in order to qualify for the state grant.  The required paperwork will be submitted expeditiously,” the campaign said.

By contrast, the SEEC validated only $220,000 of the $264,000 originally submitted by the GOP convention-endorsed candidate, Tom Foley, leaving him $30,000 short of the qualifying threshold.

Foley twice failed to meet the qualifying threshold, but he exceeded the mark Wednesday after submitting $16,549 in additional donations and further documentation for other contributions.

The McKinney-Walker campaign said it raised $280,000. Campaigns typically try to raise extra money, knowing that some contributions will be rejected or questioned.

Ninety percent of the qualifying contributions must be raised in Connecticut.

McKinney and Walker pooled their qualifying funds and are seeking a gubernatorial primary grant of $1,354,250, which they will share. Foley qualified without help from a running mate.

While McKinney and Walker are running as a team, voters in the GOP primary on Aug. 12 will cast separate votes for governor and lieutenant governor. Walker faces a three-primary with Penny Bacchiochi and Heather Bond Somers. Both already have won primary grants of $406,275.

Foley’s campaign moved quickly to reserve television time once it was confident of winning public financing.

Records on file with the FCC show that Foley’s campaign reserved the time Tuesday, the day before the State Elections Enforcement Commission approved his application for public financing.

Participants in the voluntary public-financing program must abide by spending limits of $1.6 million for a primary and $6,500,400 for the general campaign.

The Democratic ticket of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman already have qualified for a general-election grant. They had no opposition for the Democratic nomination.

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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