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GOP governor candidates spend $35 million in most expensive primary in state history

Indiana’s six Republican candidates for governor have spent more than $35 million in the most expensive primary in state history, with $20 million of that total coming in just the last three months.

Despite raising far less money than three of her opponents, Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch has the significant financial advantage heading into the final weeks of the primary campaign. Crouch has more than $3 million cash-on-hand, while none of her five opponents has more than $1 million.

Still, U.S. Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Brad Chambers and Eric Doden likely won’t struggle for money in the runup to primary Election Day. Those three combined raised nearly $12 million so far this year, while spending almost $18 million.

READ MORE: GOP candidates seek to stand out in Indiana's first competitive gubernatorial primary in 20 years

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Curtis Hill and Jamie Reitenour are on the outside looking in when it comes to money — Hill ended March with about $34,000 in his campaign account and Reitenour about $6,000 in hers.

That disparity has been reflected in public polling. Braun leads the way; Crouch, Chambers and Doden are double digits behind; and Hill and Reitenour trail at the back of the pack.

Brandon is our Statehouse bureau chief. Contact him at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.