SALT LAKE CITY — Rep.-elect Ben McAdams, the Democrat who narrowly defeated Republican Rep. Mia Love in the 4th Congressional District, was outspent by his opponent by more than $2.2 million.
McAdams, who'll resign Jan. 2 as Salt Lake County mayor, raised more than $3.3 million for his successful run against the two-term congresswoman, who collected just over $5.5 million, according to new Federal Election Commission filings.
But Love's post-election filing with the FEC, covering Oct. 18 through Nov. 26, shows she still has nearly $101,400 in cash on hand and no debts while McAdams reported owing $133,600 with less than $76,000 in available funds.
Andrew Roberts, McAdams' campaign manager, said the debt is being paid off through additional fundraising and includes bonuses staff members earned because of the win.
"The campaign debt was anticipated, has been appropriately disclosed and will be expeditiously retired," Roberts said. "It's not unusual in the case of a highly competitive and hard-fought campaign."
An email sent by McAdams to supporters the same day the report was due included a button to donate to the campaign as well as a survey about issues including immigration and opioid addiction.
The last question in the survey seeks a contribution of $10 or more, asking, "Ben's race was one of the closest in the country and he's depending on your grassroots support to keep fighting in Washington. Can you chip in to support his campaign?"
Nearly two weeks after the Nov. 6 election, McAdams declared victory in the 4th District, which includes portions of Salt Lake, Utah, Juab and Sanpete counties. He ended up winning by just 694 votes.
Love didn't formally concede the race for another week. In a wide-ranging speech Nov. 26, she criticized Republicans, including President Donald Trump, for not being more accepting of minorities, and called McAdams a "wolf in sheep's clothing."
On ABC's "The View" Friday, Love said she was targeted by Democrats because of her race.
"They targeted me because I was a, because I am, a black female Republican and they replaced me with a middle-aged white male," she said, even though she is just a year younger than McAdams, who is 44.
She said Democrats spent a lot of money to "get rid of every single diversity that they possibly could" among GOP representatives in Congress. Love had brought up similar concerns about being a Democratic target in previous interviews.
While plenty of outside money was pumped into the 4th District race by both Republican and Democratic interests, Love raised and spent more cash than McAdams.
Roberts said McAdams' "campaign was fueled by over 1,000 volunteers who helped carry Ben's message of bipartisanship throughout the district. Voters appreciated his vision and his focus on Utah families."
Also on "The View," Love said she had been surprised when the president included her among a list of fellow Republicans he said lost their races because they spurned him during the midterms.
Trump said during a post-election news conference at the White House held before the 4th District race was decided that Love "gave me no love and she lost. Too bad. Sorry about that, Mia."
Love said on the network talk show that she thought she and Trump "had a good working relationship. I didn't think that I was supposed to just completely walk in lock step. That wasn't my job."
On KSL-TV's "Sunday Edition," Love told host Doug Wright that the comments she made during her concession speech about how minorities are treated was not aimed at Utahns.
"I was talking about national Republicans, national Democrats, national politicians in Washington," Love said, adding that anyone who would use what she said "to divide us as Utahns" has an ulterior motive.
That motive, Love said, would be either "to be promoting themselves or somebody else, or doing everything they can to keep minorities and communities trapped in the situations that they are. We need to give them as many choices as possible."
Love said her "job now is to do everything I can to show what the Republican Party is about … to actually bring people home, bring them into our hearts and let them know that this is not politics as usual."32 comments on this story
A portion of Love's interview with Wright in her Saratoga Springs home aired Dec. 2 and the rest will be broadcast at 9 a.m. Sunday.
For his part, McAdams is finishing up his work as mayor before being sworn in to Congress on Jan. 3. His resignation as mayor will trigger a 30-day timeline for the Salt Lake County Democratic Party's central committee to vote on his replacement.
"I'm focused on my work at Salt Lake County, including critical decisions on transportation and economic development," the two-term mayor said in a statement. "I will leave the county in strong shape for the next mayor."