In the race for Howard County Executive, County Council member Courtney Watson took the clear financial lead Wednesday, according to campaign finance reports filed by her and opponent Allan Kittleman.
As 2014 begins, Watson has more than twice the amount of cash on hand, with $721,298. Kittleman's campaign announced Jan. 15 that the District 9 state senator had $329,495.26 to spend.
Watson raised $490,236 from supporters in 2013, while Kittleman raised $254,135.28.
Kittleman's campaign downplayed Watson's financial advantage.
"Fundraising isn’t the race we are focused on winning," Kittleman said in a statement. "We’re focused on winning the votes of Howard County citizens regardless of party affiliation. We’re focused on winning the support of those who want a county executive they can trust; one with a passion for serving all Howard County residents. One who will listen to and work hard for them.”
Kittleman also said his fundraising numbers are "ahead of schedule for where we wanted to be at this time."
As candidates for local office, both Watson and Kittleman can continue to collect campaign contributions throughout the General Assembly's 90-day legislative session.