The Republican primary to fill the 2nd Congressional District seat being vacated by Rep. Jimmy Duncan (R-TN-02) is heating up as Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett, businessman Jason Emert and State Rep. Jimmy Matlock (R-Lenoir City) vie for the job.
First quarter 2018 fundraising reports reveal that all three will have significant resources in the race. Local political observers have said that Burchett has the advantage due to his strong support and high name recognition in Knox County, which is the largest population center in the Second District. However, there are no current public polls that have been released that might give a snapshot regarding the status of the race.
The most recent Federal Election Commission fundraising reports filed by the candidates provide lots of information. The primary election date is August 2, 2018.
Tim Burchett (pictured, left)
Burchett reported raising $84,170.57 in total donations in the first quarter of 2018 (January-March) with $234,821.10 cash on hand. Burchett has raised a total of $377,342.18 in the race so far, with no personal loans from Burchett to his campaign.
Among the major notable donors to the Burchett campaign in the first quarter are Joan and Victor Ashe (former Knoxville Mayor and U.S. Ambassador to Poland), Bert Bertelkamp (businessman and UT basketball color analyst), Knoxville restaurant entrepreneur Mike Chase, Janet and David Dugger, developer Joe Hollingsworth, lobbyist David McMahan, HT Hackney Chairman Bill Sansom and Nashville businessman Orrin Ingram. Hashem Hashemin donated heavily to Burchett, Jimmy Matlock and Jason Emert.
Jason Emert (pictured, middle)
Emert raised $92,129.54 in the first quarter with $116,251.76 remaining in his account as cash on hand after expenditures. Emert’s total campaign haul so far has been $208,768.54. Emert’s first quarter fundraising includes a $50,000 loan from the candidate. He has loaned a total of $150,000 to his campaign at this point.
Some of the significant donors to Emert are Michael Davis from Maryville, William Kouns, Randy Massey and Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME). At the start of the 115th Congress in January 2017, Poliquin was the only Republican member of the House of Representatives from New England.
As noted earlier, Hashem Hashemin donated to Burchett, Matlock and Emert.
Jimmy Matlock (pictured, right)
Matlock raised $129,255 in the first quarter of 2018 with total fundraising of $342,780 in this election cycle. Matlock has $312,228 cash on hand. Matlock loaned $50,000 to his campaign in the first quarter, with his total loans to his campaign now at $125,000.
Matlock’s significant donations from notable donors include Donna and William Blewitt in Franklin, State Rep. Michael Curcio, Betty and Barry Cusick, Shayna and Derek Gunn of Brentwood, Churchill Mortgage Executive Lawson and Cory Hardwick from Nashville, Carla and Doug Harris, Hashem Hashemin, Phillis and Richard Hobbs, Developer Doug Horne, State Rep. Bud Hulsey, former State Rep. Julia Hurley, attorney Wilson Ritchie, Emily and Joey Stottler, several menbers of the Wampler family in Lenoir City, and $1000 from the campaign account of State Rep. Tim Rudd.