Republican Senate candidate Carlos Beruff of Bradenton is closing in on having spent more than $8 million of his own money in his bid to defeat Sen. Marco Rubio for re-election.
Speaking to the Tampa Bay Times editorial board Wednesday, Beruff said he’s already spent between $7.5 million and $8 million and is expecting to spend between $12 million and $15 million to win the Republican primary.
Beruff said he’s not against fundraising, but didn’t feel right asking friends to risk money on what he called “a gamble.”
“I’d rather gamble with my own money,” Beruff said.
Never miss a local story.
In his latest campaign finance report filed earlier this month, Beruff reported donating and loaning his campaign $4.2 million of his own money.
Most of his spending is directed at a nearly $1 million a week advertising campaign that is running statewide.
Beruff’s self-funding makes him the second-biggest self-funder in the nation for a seat in Congress this year.
Only Maryland Democrat David Trone, founder of Total Wine, spent more of his own money on a primary. Trone spent nearly $10 million of his own money in a losing effort to win a House seat in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., earlier this year. No other Senate candidate has spent more of their own money to win a seat this year than Beruff.