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In Northern Virginia Democratic Primary, Don Beyer Rakes In Biggest Bucks

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Documents show that former Lieutenant Governor Don Beyer is head and shoulders above the competition, raising more than a million dollars since launching his campaign earlier this year.
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Documents show that former Lieutenant Governor Don Beyer is head and shoulders above the competition, raising more than a million dollars since launching his campaign earlier this year.

Candidates in Virginia's 8th Congressional District have raised and spent more than $2 million, according to campaign-finance documents.

Documents recently released by the Federal Election Commission show former Lieutenant Governor Don Beyer is head and shoulders above the competition, raising more than $1 million since launching his campaign earlier this year. He's raised about three times as much as his closest competitor.

"I see, like, three groups of candidates—the ones who can raise like $200,000 but not much more, the ones who can go above $200,000 but not much more that about $400,000. And then Don Beyer," says Quentin Kidd, a professor at Christopher Newport University.

Former Urban League president Lavern Chatman raised $385,000 and Alexandria Mayor Bill Euille raised $314,000. Radio personality Mark Levine loaned his campaign $400,000.

"The name recognition for Don Beyer coupled with the financial advantage for Don Beyer suggests that maybe this hotly contested race is only warmly contested," says University of Mary Washington professor Stephen Farnsworth.

Because the district is heavily Democratic, the winner of next week's primary is likely to be the next member of Congress from the 8th Congressional District. That means the stakes in next week's election are high.

And as the the campaign heads into the final days, voters in the 8th Congressional District should be prepared for a very expensive onslaught of television advertising and direct mail.

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