Tags: Mia | Love | Utah | Matheson

Utah Republican Is Feeling Donors’ Love

Wednesday, 17 Oct 2012 03:08 PM

By Andra Varin

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Mia Love, who’s aiming to become the first black Republican woman in Congress, brought in twice as much money in the latest fund-raising quarter than the six-term congressman she is challenging.

Love, 37, is battling incumbent Democrat Rep. Jim Matheson in the race to represent Utah’s 4th District in Congress.

mialove2.jpg
Mia Love (AP Photo)
Utah is one of the reddest states in the nation. Matheson, 52, is the only Democrat in the state’s congressional delegation, and he can hardly be called liberal. He is the co-chairman of the Blue Dog Democrats, a group of the party's conservatives in Congress.

But Love, the mayor of Saratoga Springs, is poised to become a star in conservative circles. She has won the endorsements of top GOP figures, including vice-presidential nominee Paul Ryan and Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia.

From July to September, she raised $965,000, according to federal filings Tuesday. Much of the cash came after Love gained notice with a speech at the Republican National Convention. Matheson raised more than
matheson.jpg
Jim Matheson (AP Photo)
$470,000 in the same period.

She can use the money. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Matheson has raised $2 million overall, compared to $1.5 million for Love.

Both candidates for the seat, which has been newly created due to redistricting and stretches south from the suburbs of Salt Lake City, are Mormon. Matheson is the son of a former Utah governor. He was born in Salt Lake City to parents from pioneer families.

The daughter of Haitian immigrants, Love moved to Utah as an adult after joining the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Love is running on a platform of fiscal responsibility and has vowed to give up her congressional salary if elected. Matheson has sought to portray her as inexperienced.

A recent Deseret News/KSL poll showed Love with a six-point lead over Matheson. Given the margin of error, they’re in a statistical dead heat.

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