GOP Senate hopefuls each top $2 million

FRANKFORT — With about two months to go before the primary election, the top two Republican candidates for U.S. Senate said Tuesday their campaigns have raised more than $2 million each.

David Adams, campaign manager for Bowling Green eye surgeon Rand Paul, said the campaign reached its goal of $2 million Monday night.

"The poll numbers and contributions definitely show where this race is headed," Adams said.

Paul, son of U.S. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, had set the $2 million goal last August. Paul's campaign said more than 17,000 donors have contributed, an average of a little more than $100 each.

Secretary of State Trey Grayson's campaign organization said it crossed the $2 million mark last month. Grayson's campaign manager, Nate Hodson, said Paul's "attempt to break into the family business has benefited from his father's decades of being a wily political operative."

"Trey is proud to have kept pace with such a seasoned political dynasty," Hodson said.

Most of the donations Paul received last year — 75 percent — came from out-of-state donors, many of whom also contributed to his father's failed 2008 presidential bid, according to an analysis of Federal Election Commission data by the Center for Responsive Politics. Contributors from Dallas, Houston and Boston donated a little more than $60,000 to the younger Paul's efforts.

Grayson received the most in political action committee funds of any U.S. Senate candidate in Kentucky, a little more than $250,000, which accounted for about 15 percent of his campaign contributions last year. Much of the funding came from business-focused groups. Alabama GOP Sen. Richard Shelby's Defend America PAC contributed $10,000.

Details of the campaigns' finances for the first three months of 2010 don't have to be filed with the Federal Election Commission until next month.