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Giannoulias Trails Kirk In Latest Fundraising But Leads Overall Senate Money Race

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State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias reported Tuesday his campaign raised $1.1 million in the third quarter of 2009 and has $2.4 million on hand in the race for President Obama's former Senate seat.

Giannoulias outpaced Democratic challengers David Hoffman and Jacob Meister, both of whom raised about $1 million in the third quarter, but did not equal Republican Mark Kirk's $1.6 million haul for the fundraising period.

U.S. Rep. Kirk, the Republican frontrunner, still trails Giannoulias in total campaign cash, but narrowed the gap after using Sen. John McCain's donor list for a Chicago fundraiser that netted him $500,000 according to Capitol Fax. McCain has endorsed Kirk and is actively supporting his campaign.

Giannoulias has raised $2.85 million since launching his Senate bid in March, none of it from corporate PACs or federal lobbyists, according to his campaign. That total does not count donations Giannoulias has made to his own campaign.

By contrast, Hoffman's $905,000 includes a $500,000 personal loan to his campaign, while over $1 million of Meister's $1,057,000 third quarter total came from the candidate himself.

The Giannoulias camp has made contributions from lobbyists and PACs a central point of difference between the state treasurer and Congressman Kirk, whom they have tried to paint as beholden to corporate influence.

"Lobbyists and special interests in Washington have blocked change for too long," Giannoulias said in a statement. "Mark Kirk has taken their money and voted their way and the people of Illinois deserve better."

Another Democratic candidate, Cheryle Robinson Jackson, the former Chicago Urban League president, has yet to release her third quarter numbers.

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