The attorney challenging Rep. Patrick McHenry outraised him in the last quarter, as both campaigns began to use the economic downturn as an issue in the final stretch of their congressional race.
McHenry, a Cherryville Republican finishing his second term, raised $195,000 between July and September, and had $440,000 cash on hand, his campaign said.
He made a $175,000 personal loan to the campaign in an earlier reporting period.
Democrat Daniel Johnson, a former prosecutor and Navy veteran from Hickory, raised $240,000, his most successful quarter, and had $365,000 in cash, his campaign said.
The race has been widely viewed as an uphill battle for Johnson because the 10th District has been a solidly Republican stronghold. But national polls indicate the race is closer than expected.
Both campaigns said they would crank up advertising in the final weeks of the campaign.
“We intend to spend as much as half a million dollars on media advertising in the final two weeks of the campaign to ensure victory,” said McHenry's campaign manager Rebecca Yount.
McHenry voted against using $700billion to buy up bad debt from failing banks, and suggested Johnson's policies would put the nation in recession.
“Daniel Johnson's support for taxpayer-funded bailouts of Wall Street sends a chill down the spine of every middle class family in Western North Carolina,” Yount said.
Johnson's campaign noted that McHenry, who has a seat on the House Financial Services Committee, has been financed over the years with $809,000 in campaign contributions from the industry, including donors from troubled companies that began the crisis such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
“The campaign will be able to inform voters about how Congressman McHenry advocated for the subprime lenders who caused this financial crisis and worked to privatize Social Security,” campaign manager Lauren Moore said.