Rounds raises $600K in second quarter

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The second-quarter sum is much-improved over his first-quarter $184,000 haul, a total that caused some observers of the race to wonder whether he could launch a credible campaign for the seat.

With Sen. Tim Johnson's (D-S.D.) decision to retire, Republicans have seen a top pickup opportunity open up, and they nabbed their preferred recruit in Rounds.

Democrats' top two recruits opted out of the race, and their only announced contender is two-time House candidate Rick Weiland.

Rounds, however, remains open to a primary challenger, as conservative groups, including the Club for Growth, are opposed to his candidacy.