Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, continued to hold a wide lead in fund raising among Utah's eight major-party congressional candidates in the final pre-election reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. Rep. Wayne Owens, D-Utah, was the top fund-raiser among House candidates.
Hatch reported raising $2,099,331 so far this year while Owens showed contributions of $368,505. Both figures included last-minute reports of major contributors through Nov. 1.Democrat Brian Moss, Hatch's opponent in the Utah Senate campaign, showed 1988 contributions of $147,517.
Owens' Republican challenger, Richard Snelgrove, reported raising $196,092.
In the 1st District, the close race between Republican Jim Hansen, R-Utah, and Democrat challenger Gunn McKay has so far this year cost contributors $515,595, with Hansen ahead, $293,432 to McKay's $222,163. But McKay's total included only gifts received to Oct. 15th while Hansen's went through Oct. 26th.
In the 3rd Congressional District, incumbent Rep. Howard Nielson, R-Utah, held a dollar edge of $72,008 to Democrat Robert String-ham's $11,398.
What does all that money go for? In addition to the expected costs of salaries, postage and printing, Brian Moss spent at least $1,332.92 on balloons, string and helium to stir up enthusiasm among his backers. He also spent $7 in campaign money to pay a University of Utah parking ticket on Sept. 23.
Hatch used $2,253 of his overflowing campaign war chest to pay for his hotel room at the Republican National Convention in New Orleans, and gave Snelgrove and Hansen $2,000 each to aid their election efforts.
Hatch spent $117 on auto repairs, and tuneup on a campaign van, then gave $100 each to Republican committees in Sanpete, Utah, Sevier, Cache, Washington, Box Elder and Millard counties.