Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo maintained her huge financial advantage over gubernatorial rivals in fourth-quarter fundraising, with a balance of $3,349,632 towering over the comparable amount ($240,572) for the closest competitor, Cranston Mayor Allan Fung.
Raimondo has proven an exceptional fundraiser since she entered politics with a 2010 run for state treasurer.
Yet a new Morning Consult survey showed Raimondo with a 47 disapproval rate -- compared to a 40 percent approval rate -- suggesting a competitive re-election fight. Raimondo, who won election as governor by defeating Fung in 2014, has not reached an approval rating of 50 percent in publicly available polling in recent years.
Yet the Democratic governor's cash stockpile indicates she will have plenty of money to support her campaign. Raimondo collected $562,000 in contributions from individuals during Q4.
Fung's balance increased from $229,650 in Q3 to $240,572 in Q4.
House Minority Leader Patricia Morgan of West Warwick, who is also running for governor as a Republican, reported a balance of $117,330, up from $90.968 at the end of Q3. A third Republican candidate, Giovanni Feroce, does not have an active campaign account.
Republican-turned-independent candidate Joe Trillo reported a Q4 balance of $126,858, a slight decrease from his previous balance.
Former Gov. Lincoln Chafee is mulling a campaign. He has said he may not make a decision until the filing deadline in June, and could make a late start because of his family's considerable financial resources.
Elsewhere, Democratic attorney general candidate Peter Neronha had a strong fundraising quarter, raising his balance from less than $150 to $157,516.
State Rep. Aaron Regunberg, who is running a primary challenge to Lt. Gov. Dan McKee, has more than twice as much money on hand as McKee. Regunberg reported a balance of $275,728, up from $213,570, compared to McKee's tally of $126,621, up from $73,925 in Q3.