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Connecticut: Dodd, McMahon Release 3rd-Quarter Money Totals

Sen. Chris Dodd (D) announced Wednesday that he raised $900,000 in the third quarter of 2009, a time period during which he was playing a key role in the Senate’s health care debate and recovering from prostate cancer surgery. Meanwhile, Dodd’s fourth-quarter fundraising is getting an early boost from an Oct. 23 fundraiser headlined by President Barack Obama in Stamford.

Dodd’s fundraising totals were released on the same day as it was reported that World Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon (R) spent more than $2 million in the first two weeks of her quest to challenge Dodd. Third-quarter fundraising reports due to be filed today will show McMahon has spent $2.05 million on her bid so far for the GOP Senate nomination. She will show $1.45 million in the bank as of the end of last month.

McMahon, who is reportedly willing to spend upward of $30 million of her own money on the race, will report loaning her campaign $3 million so far. McMahon has also donated $496,000 in in-kind contributions that include campaign-related expenses she paid for out of pocket, bringing her total personal investment to almost $3.5 million.

Public polling has shown Dodd to be the most vulnerable Senator seeking re-election in 2010, and several GOP candidates have lined up to challenge the chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee.

McMahon’s spending eclipsed her GOP competition, which includes former Rep. Rob Simmons, former Ambassador to Ireland Tom Foley, state Sen. Sam Caligiuri and businessman Peter Schiff.

Simmons, who is the leading Republican in the race according to polls, announced Tuesday morning that he raised almost $1 million in the third quarter and had just more than $1 million in cash on hand as of Sept. 30. Simmons also announced that he has raised $1.7 million to date.

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