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Candidates rake in the bucks online

Three of the five candidates seeking the 18th District State House seat representing Evanston have made major use in recent months of online fundraising techniques.

Three of the five candidates seeking the 18th District State House seat representing Evanston have made major use in recent months of online fundraising techniques.

Between July 23 and today Patrick Keenan-Devlin raised $27,861 using the online Democratic campaign site Act Blue. Robyn Gabel raised $24,560. Eamon Kelly raised $21,315.

Jeff Smith was a distant fourth with $6,167 raised through Act Blue, and Edmund Moran had no reported contributions through the site.

But given his early start well before our previous check of the site July 23, Eamon Kelly is tops in total online contributions so far, with Keenan-Devlin in second place.

So far Kelly has a total of 283 contributions made online, Keenan-Devlin has 225, Gabel has 128 and Smith has 96. The average size of the online contributions has ranged from a high of $192 for Gabel to a low of $120 for Smith.

The filing period for official state campaign finance reports for the second half of 2009 started Jan. 4 but won’t close until Jan. 20, less than two weeks before election day.

So far none of the candidates in the Evanston race have submitted their state reports, so the Act Blue numbers provide the best available snapshot of recent fundraising activity.

At the time of the last semi-annual state reports, showing donations of all types through June 30, not just online contributions, Eamon Kelly was leading with $36,000 raised, Jeff Smith had $29,000, and Patrick Keenan-Devlin had raised just over $100.

When she organized her campaign committee at the end of August, Robyn Gabel had $2,561 in contributions on hand. Edmund Moran started his state house campaign with $1,792 left over from his aldermanic campaign committee.

The campaign finance rules also require candidates to immediately report any contributions of $500 or more made within 30 days of the election.

In recent days Gabel has reported a $1,500 donation from the Chicago Federation of Labor and Kelly has reported contributions of $1,000 each from the Cook County College Teachers Union and the Frerichs for State Senate committee.

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