Breaking News
More () »

7Investigates: Brad Little receiving big money from PACs, corporations

We're diving into campaign finance reports to find out how Idaho's gubernatorial candidates are spending their campaign funds.

BOISE — Election night is looming less than three weeks away.

On Tuesday, we dove into gubernatorial Democratic candidate Paulette Jordan's campaign finance reports. In this part of the series, we take a look at Republican nominee Brad Little and what donations came in and what money was spent between May 26 and September 30.

7Investigates dug through Brad Little's 96 pages worth of his contributions and expenditures, and found that he raised about $725,000 and spent about $266,000. By comparison, Jordan raised a little under $473,000 and spent roughly $421,000.

MORE: Ballot initiatives, governor's race draw most campaign money

Released October 10, Little's latest campaign finance report shows he's spent the bulk of his campaign treasure chest paying staff, political consulting firms, software and analytics companies, accounting and fundraising services. Little spent a small percentage of his campaign money on travel, lodging and food across the Gem State.

The Republican candidate has 75 pages worth of campaign contributions - most coming from individuals across the state. Well over a thousand people donated since the May primary in amounts between $10 and $5,000.

While Jordan's campaign received 13 unique contributions of $5,000, Little got more than 60 different $5,000 contributions.

MORE: Brad Little and Paulette Jordan go toe-to-toe in televised debate

Several political actions committees (PAC) play a role in Little's coffer. Big spenders include Idaho Prosperity Fund, Idaho Medical PAC, Missouri-based Enterprise Holdings Inc. PAC, Sen. Mike Crapo's federal Idaho Conservative Growth Fund and the Idaho Horse Racing PAC.

Also contributing to his $725,000 in donations are farms, agricultural companies, associations, and other businesses - from both in state and out of state.

There are more than 100 companies that donated between $500 and $5,000 dollars, ranging from small farms to large corporations like Simplot, AgriBeef, Hecla, Sinclair Companies and Monsanto.

Big money also came from health insurance and health care companies, like SelectHealth, United Health Group, and Regence Blue Shield of Idaho.

VOTER GUIDE: November 2018 general election

KTVB asked his campaign about these contributions. and whether big donations from big businesses would affect Little's decision-making should he become governor.

His campaign manager Zach Hauge simply said Little's decision-making will be driven by listening and talking to Idahoans. He went on to say the lt. governor finds the "widespread support they're getting from teachers, ranchers, small business, large business, and retirees" humbling.

When asked why these health care companies are contributing to Little's campaign, Hauge said the campaign assumes it's because they believe in his vision for "world class schools, a stronger economy and breaking up the Obamacare monopoly in Idaho".

You can find Brad Little's entire campaign finance report listing contributions and expenditures between the end of May and end of September on the Idaho Secretary of State's website.