ENCINITAS — Encinitas Council candidate Catherine Blakespear outraised her sole competitor, Julie Graboi, seven to one during the first half of the year, according to campaign expense reports filed this week.
Blakespear raised $22,750 between Jan. 1 and June 30, according to her campaign statements. Graboi reported receiving $3,148 during the same time period.
“I think I am a strong candidate and people believe in me and are willing to invest money to support a vision of Encinitas I support,” Blakespear said. “I feel very fortunate people have been so generous.”
Blakespear, an attorney, was her biggest campaign donor, contributing $5,253 to her own cause. The most she received from any other donor was $250, the maximum allowed by the city, from multiple sources.
Blakespear said she felt her fundraising demonstrates her seriousness as a candidate.
“If you take it seriously, you have to raise money,” she said. “I think it is naïve to overlook that part. I want to win. I am not raising money because it is fun or easy, I am raising money because I want to win.
“I think raising $22,000 in the first half of the year is a great start and shows that I have momentum,” said Blakespear, who also reported spending $5,000 during the first half of the year, including $800 on consulting services from Simon Mayeski, a San Diego activist and member of Common Cause, who is serving as Blakespear’s campaign treasurer.
Mayeski has served as treasurer on other campaigns before, including San Diego City Council candidate John Hartley.
Both Blakespear and Graboi received contributions from local politicians. Blakespear got $250 from council members Teresa Barth and Lisa Shaffer; Graboi received $250 from Oceanside Councilwoman Esther Sanchez.
Sanchez, reached Friday, said Graboi’s passion for the community has impressed her.
“I have gotten to know her over the past couple of months, and I am so impressed with her passion for representing the best interest of the community of Encinitas,” Sanchez said. “I believe she resonates with the community.”
Graboi’s biggest campaign expense to date was $405 to the city of San Diego for a venue rental.
Graboi said the gap between Blakespear and her fundraising is due to the fact that Blakespear has been at it longer – Graboi just entered the race in May.
“This has been a long-term goal of hers, it wasn’t something I was planning on doing until I became inspired in the end,” Graboi said.
Graboi said the current filings don’t include her most recent fundraising efforts, which have considerably increased her warchest, she said.
“We do have more funds now,” she said, adding that money is not a guarantee of campaign success. “In our local election history, even recently, the people who have the most money don’t necessarily win.”
In the race for mayor, Kristin Gaspar reported $7,997 in contributions — $2,997 from various donors and a $5,000 loan from herself.
Tony Kranz filed a state campaign formation form, which stated he had not raised $1,000 at the time of filing. He said he wasn’t required to report fundraising because he formed his committee after the reporting period ended June 30 but plans on amending the form at the time he raises more than $1,000.
Alex Fidel reported contributing $28 to his own campaign.