WARREN — U.S. Representative Bill Johnson, who is running for re-election in the 6th congressional district, has a significant financial advantage over his opponents.
With the May 3 primary closing, Johnson, R-Marietta, declared $1,343,766 in his campaign fund as of March 31 — the last day of the first quarter.
Johnson, who was first elected in 2010, raised $186,681 in the first three months of this year, including $131,400 from political action committees and $55,281 from individuals, according to his report on campaign finance filed with the Federal Election Commission.
Among the PACs that donated $5,000 to him in the first quarter were AT&T of Dallas, Political Education Patterns of Cleveland, Koch Industries Inc. of Washington, DC, and Huck PAC of Little Rock, Ark. The latter is the PAC of the former governor of Arkansas. Mike Huckabee.
Johnson spent $103,115 in the first quarter, with his largest spending being $16,261 at 814 Consulting LLC of Alexandria, Va., for fundraising consulting; $14,500 to Red Brick Strategies of Columbus for fundraising advice; $10,000 to the Ohio Republican Party; and $9,634 to Communications Counsel of Columbus for media consultation.
The new 6th congressional district includes all of Jefferson, Harrison, Columbiana, Carroll, Belmont, Mahoning, Monroe, Noble, and Washington counties and parts of Stark and Tuscarawas counties. Mahoning is the most populous county in the district.
Republicans Michael S. Morgenstern of Poland, John Anderson of Enon, and Gregory M. Zelenitz of Belmont did not file campaign finance returns. Applicants who do not raise or spend at least $5,000 are not required to file quarterly reports with the FEC.
Four Democrats are running for their party’s nomination in the 6th District in the May 3 primary.
Only Campbell’s Louis Lyras filed a report in the first quarter.
Lyras said he loaned his campaign $50,000: $20,000 on January 10 and $30,000 on March 23. He raised nothing from donors.
Lyras ran unsuccessfully in the 2020 Republican primary for the 13th district, which was redrawn as part of the statewide congressional redistricting process. All of Mahoning County is now in the 6th District.
Lyras also submitted petitions to run as an independent for 13th in 2018, but did not qualify for that ballot.
In addition to the $50,000, Lyras loaned $134,400 to those previous unsuccessful campaigns and owes $11,631 in debt to various suppliers as of the second quarter of 2019.
Lyras spent $1,781 in the first quarter of this year, including $1,570 for web design.
Other Democrats seeking the nomination who did not file campaign finance returns were Eric Jones of Austintown, Martin Alexander of Boardman and Shawna Roberts of Belmont.