First-time political candidate Joseph Kennedy III is reporting a fund-raising haul that far outpaced his Republican rivals over the first three months of the year.
The Democratic candidate in the open 4th Congressional District race said he raised more than $1.3 million in the first quarter of 2012, according to WBUR political reporter Fred Thys.
Sean Bielat, who unsuccessfully challenged retiring Rep. Barney Frank for the seat in 2010, reported raising $175,000 over the same period. Former state mental health Commissioner Elizabeth Childs, the race's other Republican candidate, raised $42,000 in the first quarter.
In a recent interview with WBUR's Bob Oakes, Bielat acknowledged he's likely to be at a fund-raising disadvantage when compared to Kennedy.
"From everything I know, I think that I’m going to be out-raised, but I’m not sure that that is going to be decisive," Bielat said.
Childs, in a separate interview, also said she thinks Kennedy is beatable.
"I think he’s vulnerable," she said. "I think he doesn’t have a proven track record — I do."
6th Congressional District
Fund-raising totals are considerably closer in the 6th Congressional District.
Republican Richard Tisei, a former state senator and candidate for lieutenant governor, raised $350,000 in the first quarter, his campaign told Thys. That's $30,000 more than incumbent Democratic Rep. John Tierney raised over the same period.
As Thys reported last month, the National Republican Congressional Committee "views Tisei as the Republican party’s best prospect for winning a congressional seat in Massachusetts."
"Tierney has held on to the district since 1997," Thys reported. "Now, redistricting is likely to make it a more competitive race for Republicans. The district added three towns that Sen. Scott Brown, and then [gubernatorial candidate] Charlie Baker and his running mate, Tisei, won in 2010."
This program aired on April 13, 2012. The audio for this program is not available.