Currently, only one incumbent running for re-election to the Phoenix City Council faces opposition in the Aug. 29 election.
The campaign rhetoric is fiery. But in terms of fundraising prowess, the race for City Council in east Phoenix is a lopsided fight, to put it mildly.
Incumbent Councilman Sal DiCiccio has a Titanic-size financial advantage over challenger Kevin Patterson in the city’s Aug. 29 election — to the tune of about $540,000.
DiCiccio has raised more than $567,400 for his re-election campaign, according his latest filing. Patterson raised a paltry $27,700 in the last period.
The candidates were required to file finance reports last weekend, disclosing any activity through June 30. The report was Patterson’s first since jumping into the race in late April.
DiCiccio’s fundraising total is a record for a council member, surpassed only by mayoral candidates. His campaign would not comment on the haul.
Political insiders have long doubted Patterson’s chances of unseating DiCiccio, and the money gap reinforces that perception. Nevertheless, Patterson’s campaign is optimistic.
“A lot of political insiders thought Hillary Clinton was going to be the next president of the United States, too,” quipped Randy Perez, Patterson’s campaign manager.
Perez said Patterson has grassroots momentum, evidenced by the support of hundreds of volunteers, because residents are fed up with a lack of progress under DiCiccio.
DiCiccio and Patterson are vying for the District 6 council seat. The district encompasses Ahwatukee Foothills, Arcadia, Biltmore and other parts of central and east Phoenix.
But if DiCiccio wins, as insiders expect, that raises another intriguing question: What does he do with a half-million dollars sitting in his campaign piggy bank?
He’s long been rumored a possible contender for mayor, and sitting Mayor Greg Stanton could fly the coop to run for a statewide office next year. Who’s got the popcorn and Red Vines ready?
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