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O'Rourke raises more than $70M in Texas Senate bid

O'Rourke raises more than $70M in Texas Senate bid

Rep. Beto O'RourkeRobert (Beto) Francis O'RourkeIncoming Dem lawmaker from Texas says Nielsen should be replaced as DHS chief Election Countdown: Lawsuits fly in Florida recount fight | Nelson pushes to extend deadline | Judge says Georgia county violated Civil Rights Act | Biden, Sanders lead 2020 Dem field in poll | Bloomberg to decide on 2020 by February Texas congresswoman-elect says southern border has 'never been safer' MORE (D-Texas) has raised more than $70 million in his bid challenging Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzIncoming Dem lawmaker from Texas says Nielsen should be replaced as DHS chief Election Countdown: Lawsuits fly in Florida recount fight | Nelson pushes to extend deadline | Judge says Georgia county violated Civil Rights Act | Biden, Sanders lead 2020 Dem field in poll | Bloomberg to decide on 2020 by February Poll: Biden and Sanders lead 2020 Dem field, followed by Beto O'Rourke MORE (R-Texas). 

The rising Democratic star's latest campaign filing with the Federal Election Commission showed that he raised almost $8.5 million in the first 17 days of October, which brought his net contributions since January 2017 to about $70.3 million. 

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O'Rourke spent $21 million during the first half of October and still had $10.3 million on hand.

The $70 million he's raised far outpaces the sum Cruz has brought in. 

Cruz has raised about $30 million since early 2017, when O'Rourke entered the race, according to Dallas Morning News. The newspaper notes that Cruz has raised about $40.5 million when dating his fundraising back to 2012, which is when he won his seat. 

"This is the most expensive Senate race in the country," Cruz said at campaign stop Friday in Nacogdoches, Texas, the newspaper reported. "Congressman O'Rourke is the No. 1 Democratic fundraiser in the country. And tens of millions of dollars are flooding into Texas from liberals across the country."

Cruz added that Senate races are about more than the amount of money a candidate can raise. 

O'Rourke has gained considerable attention in his quest to become the first Democrat in three decades to win a U.S. Senate seat in the state of Texas. 

But with less than two weeks until the midterm elections, polls have shown Cruz with a solid lead over the three-term congressman. 

Given the amount of money O'Rourke's campaign has raised, questions have arose regarding whether he would share any of his funds with other Democratic Senate candidates in competitive races. 

O'Rourke said earlier this month that he has no plans of taking that step. 

"I'm focused on Texas. Most of our contributions have come from Texas. All of them have come from people. Not a dime from PACs," he said.