While money is tight in the mayor’s race, the battle for the 2nd Council District in South and Southwest Philadelphia is getting expensive.
Just how expensive?
Campaign finance reports filed this week, covering fundraising efforts through Dec. 31, show incumbent Councilman Kenyatta Johnson and challenger Ori Feibush both raised more than $300,000 last year (Johnson raised $330,398 and Feibush $326,950). That’s more than most of the city’s mayoral candidates rustled up.
At the end of 2014, Johnson had more money in the bank with $371,546, while Feibush ended the year with $208,046 on hand.
The filings also show the candidates filled their coffers in different ways. Feibush, a well-financed real-estate developer, put nearly $250,000 of his own money into his campaign, while Johnson racked up some big sums from corporate, labor and pro-charter school PACs.
Johnson’s spokesman Mark Nevins said the filings show a stark contrast between the two candidates.
“Kenyatta’s campaign finance report shows a campaign that’s being powered by the people, and I think by contrast, Ori’s report shows a campaign that’s being powered by Ori,” Nevins said.
Feibush spun the same sentiment a different way.
“What I think matters a whole lot more … is having a candidate who’s willing to put up his own dollars and who’s unwilling to take dollars from groups and organizations that the average voter would be disappointed by,” he said.
Feibush’s sizable donation to his own campaign has triggered a city law allowing Johnson to collect larger checks. That will put an even bigger price tag on this hot race.