CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- With fewer than five months until Election Day, Democrat Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin has a formidable cash advantage over his Republican challenger, according to campaign finance reports filed on Tuesday.
So far, Tomblin has about $1.2 million on hand for this fall's general election, according to a filing with the Secretary of State's Office.
Morgantown businessman Bill Maloney has $375,000, according to his campaign filing. From April 23 through May 20 - a period that includes the May 8 primary - Tomblin raised $377,000, which is more than Maloney reported having in his account.
Tomblin narrowly beat Maloney in a special election last fall.
In that race, Maloney - who once owned a drilling company - waged a $3.3 million campaign. Of that, $2.4 million was Maloney's own money.
It's unclear if Maloney will self-finance his campaign this year and, if so, to what extent. So far, he has not given himself any cash.
Tomblin - who had semi-incumbent status last year and was acting as governor after three decades in the state Legislature - had $4.2 million at his disposal.
Of that, nearly $400,000 came from money he had been sitting on as a long-time lawmaker in a safe district. He raised the rest. The largest sectors to contribute to Tomblin's 2011 campaign were lawyers and lobbyists, followed by mining interests, according to data compiled by the National Institute on Money in State Politics.
But while Tomblin has a large cash advantage so far, longtime Democrat Attorney General Darrell McGraw appears to be struggling, at least so far.
McGraw has $96,000 for the fall, but he raised only $10,000 in the most recent reporting period.
According to his finance reports, McGraw has no paid staff and has held no fundraisers since early April.
His opponent, Republican lawyer Patrick Morrisey, had $242,000 on hand at the end of the reporting period, though he's given himself $50,000 since the start of the election cycle.
Morrisey received most of his donations from individuals sending him money, but he held two fundraisers, according to his filing.
The first event, at Charleston attorney Tom Lane's house, netted $7,500. The second was in Washington, D.C., at the offices of King & Spaulding, the corporate law firm that Morrisey left to run for attorney general.
Morrisey said his own contributions were "seed money" for his campaign and he said the majority of his campaign's contributors would come from West Virginia.
"The majority of our contributions are from West Virginia and the majority of our contributors throughout the campaign will always be from West Virginia, but we are going to raise money from all sources from West Virginia and out of state to compete against Darrell Mc-Graw's inappropriate use of taxpayer money," Morrisey said.
Morrisey was referring to print, radio and TV ads Mc-Graw's office runs that feature the attorney general. The Attorney General's Office has long faced criticism for running ads that feature McGraw's name and image.
This year, the attorney's office plans to spend a significant amount of money to promote legal counseling meant to help people with mortgages stay in their homes.
The money comes from the $34 million West Virginia received from a landmark national settlement with five of the nation's largest mortgage companies that was announced in February.
The state's cut includes about $6 million meant to help give legal counseling.
Chief Deputy Attorney General Fran Hughes said the state is spending money to make people aware of the help the Attorney General's Office can provide.