Representative Edward J. Markey raised $4.8 million in his campaign for US Senate in the past three months, cementing his position as the front-runner for Massachusetts’ open seat and giving him a substantial war chest heading into the final week before the state primary.
The Malden native outpaced his Democratic rival, Representative Stephen F. Lynch of South Boston, and the three Republicans in the race during the most recent federal fund-raising period, Jan. 1 through April 10.
Lynch brought in $2.3 million during the period, which included $744,000 that was transferred from his US House political account.
During the 15 weeks, private equity investor and former Navy SEAL Gabriel E. Gomez of Cohasset led the GOP field. His campaign reported taking in $1.2 million. State Representative Daniel B. Winslow of Norfolk took in $395,000. Former US attorney Michael J. Sullivan, Republican of Abington, raised $174,000.
Gomez and Winslow loaned substantial amounts of personal funds to their campaigns. Gomez loaned his campaign $600,000, while Winslow loaned $150,000 to his Senate effort.
The primary election is April 30.
The gap in fund-raising between the Democrats and Republicans will leave a steep path for the GOP nominee, said veteran Massachusetts Republican consultant Rob Gray.
“It’s a pretty wide chasm to make up for whichever Republican candidate wins — and in a very short period of time,” Gray said. “These fund-raising totals make already long odds for Republicans look even longer.”
Fund-raising numbers can be a key metric in determining the depth and breadth of a candidate’s support.
According to their respective campaigns, Markey had 18,130 donors during the fund-raising period to Lynch’s 3,304 donors. Gomez had more than 1,150, his spokesman said. The other campaigns did not respond to requests for the number of donors and that information was not publicly available Sunday.
Markey spokesman Andrew Zucker said in a statement to the Globe that “the campaign’s fund-raising total reflects our growing support as we head into the final days of this election.”
Late last year, Markey picked up an endorsement from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the national Democratic Party’s organization devoted to electing party members to the Senate. An endorsement from that group can help line up significant support from grass-roots and big-money donors across the country.
Besides fund-raising, another important metric in determining the health of the campaign is how much money the candidates have in the bank. A campaign’s cash on hand indicates the resources available for everything from buying television ads and lawn signs, to sending out direct mail, paying staff, and organizing get-out-the-vote efforts on election day.
On April 10, Markey had $4.6 million in the bank, Lynch had $514,000, Gomez had $500,000, Winslow had $142,000, and Sullivan had $96,000.
Sullivan’s campaign manager, Paul Moore, defended his candidate’s fifth-place haul.
“Mike started last in terms of building a fund-raising machine and his focus has been on developing a successful grass-roots effort that I expect will successfully carry us through the primary,” Moore said.
Fund-raising reports also reveal how much each campaign has spent in the race for the Senate seat vacated by John Kerry when he became US secretary of state. Markey spent $3.2 million; Lynch, $1.8 million; Gomez, $683,000; Winslow, $252,000; and Sullivan, $78,000.
The fund-raising numbers are from public filings with the Federal Election Commission. Gomez’s report was not available on Sunday, but his campaign provided his fund-raising data to the Globe.
All five candidates are coming off a self-imposed hiatus in campaign activity after the Boston Marathon bombings last week. But even before the pause from politics, the special election contest was particularly low-key compared with other recent statewide elections in the Commonwealth.
So far, the race has seen none of the fireworks and national attention that marked the white-hot Senate race between Democrat Elizabeth Warren and Republican Scott P. Brown.
The general election is slated for June 25.Joshua Miller can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @jm_bos.