Democrat Eloise Gomez Reyes raised $302,000 in the final three months of 2013, boosting her total in a crowded Southern California primary against one of the most vulnerable GOP incumbents in the country. 


Gomez Reyes, who released her fundraising total first to The Hill, is one of several Democrats jockeying for the chance to take on Rep. Gary Miller (R-Calif.), though she's not the choice of the national party.

Miller sits in the most Democratic district in the country held by a Republican, after a primary fluke helped the GOP incumbent win an unlikely contest in 2012. In California's new top-two primary system, Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar (D) didn't make it into the top two, and Miller won in the fall against another Republican, despite having never represented any of the redrawn district before. 

Aguilar is running again, with the blessing of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, but Gomez Reyes has the backing of EMILY's List, which endorses women candidates who support abortion rights, and hopes she'll win the right to face Miller in the June all-party primary. Former Rep. Joe Baca (D-Calif.) is also running. 

“The families of the Inland Empire have shown that they are ready for change, and they know that I am the Democrat in this race who will be the voice our community needs in Washington,” Reyes will say in a statement. “Grassroots support from the community for our campaign is growing every day — and we are using that momentum in our fight for jobs, education and a fair shot for all.”

Aguilar hasn't yet announced his fundraising totals, though in the third quarter of the year he raised $200,000 and ended with $437,000 cash on hand. Gomez Reyes didn't release how much her campaign had in the bank at the end of the year. 

Republicans hope a messy Democratic primary could once again help save Miller, but unless another GOP candidate enters the fray, it's unlikely the same scenario could play out again. 

— This post was updated at 10:22 a.m.