West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie Tennant, Rep. Shelley Moore Capito’s (R-W.Va.) likely Democratic opponent in the Senate race there, nearly paced Capito in fundraising in the first quarter.
The congresswoman still boasts a more than 4-to-1 cash advantage over Tennant, with $4.2 million cash on hand compared to more than $1 million for Tennant.
But it’s another strong showing for the Democrat, who raised nearly $650,000 last quarter, her first full quarter in the race. Capito's fundraising slightly declined from $830,000 in the fourth quarter.
Tennant's campaign touted the fact that she's surpassing what North Dakota Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp brought in at this same point in her campaign last cycle.
Democrats see Heitkamp’s win as evidence they can succeed even in difficult open red-state seats like West Virginia, which they’re defending due to Sen. Jay Rockefeller’s (D-W.Va.) retirement.
Still, Capito is heavily favored to pick up the seat this fall.