House partisan caucuses focus funding on Smith vs. Johnson campaign

State House Democrats actually raised more money than their Republican counterparts during October, but the House GOP had a 3-to-1 lead in campaign spending thanks to a substantial stash of money in the bank from previous fundraising, according to new disclosures.

A major focus for both the House Republican Caucus and the House Democratic Caucus was the District 13 rematch between Republican Rep. Eddie Smith of Knoxville and former Democratic Rep. Gloria Johnson, followed by $37,000 to help Rep. Jay Reedy of Erin in House District 74 (opposed by Democrat Andy Porch).

Biggest House GOP expenditure: $200,900 on advertising to benefit Smith, apparently including attack ads against Johnson.

Biggest House Democratic Caucus expenditure: a $25,000 donation to Johnson.

The reports cover the period Oct. 1-29.

The House Democrats took in $208,100 during the period. Congressman Jim Cooper gave the Caucus $30,000 and Nashville developer Bill Freeman gave $75,000. Freeman, a potential 2018 gubernatorial candidate, had given House Democrats $100,000 earlier in the year. The Caucus reported spending of $97,594 with a cash-on-hand balance of $165,227.

House Republicans raised just $50,250 during the period, but had expenditures totaling $319,457 with a remaining balance of $155,211.

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