Ehrlich raises $2.8 million, has $1.7 available

Former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., the Republican nominee for governor, reported Tuesday that he and running mate Mary Kane have raised more than $2.8 million since the end of August.

"We like where we are right now," Ehrlich said after a campaign event in Baltimore County, adding that last-minute donations were coming in "fast and furious."

The Ehrlich campaign had about $1.77 million left in the bank as of Sunday night, spokesman Henry Fawell said. He said that 98 percent of the money raised came from Maryland families and small businesses and that the campaign took out no loans.

With less than two weeks to go until Election Day, Ehrlich and Democratic Gov. Martin O'Malley are using their cash to flood Baltimore and Washington airwaves with campaign ads. O'Malley has dominated the pricier D.C. market, but Ehrlich said that would soon change.

"We'll be up on Washington TV a lot," he said. "We obviously have the dollars." The former governor said a lack of cash flow this summer prevented him from countering O'Malley's message sooner.

The Ehrlich campaign began airing a new ad Tuesday night in Baltimore and Washington.

O'Malley had not released his latest numbers Tuesday evening. As of the last reporting period, which became public in early September, O'Malley had $6.5 million in the bank, compared to Ehrlich's $2.5 million.

"This strong showing demonstrates that Maryland families and small businesses continue to embrace Bob Ehrlich's vision of strong leadership to create more jobs, lower taxes, and hold the line on government spending," Fawell said in an e-mail.

The final pre-election campaign finance reporting period closed Sunday night. Reports are due just before midnight Saturday to the State Board of Elections, meaning the official documents might not be available until this weekend or early next week.

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