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Hobbs, Lake have burned through most cash in gubernatorial race

Democrat Katie Hobbs spent the most money in 2021, yet Republican Kari Lake ended the year with less cash than her primary opponents.

PHOENIX — Editor's Note: The video above is from an earlier broadcast. 

Republican candidate Kari Lake outspent her primary opponents last year in Arizona's competitive gubernatorial race, yet she wasn't the top candidate to bring in the most cash donations.   

Campaign finance reports published last week show Lake ended 2021 with about $375,000 on hand, significantly less than two of her primary opponents. 

Republican Steve Gaynor had about $4.6 million on hand after spending about $324,000 last year. Former Congressman Matt Salmon, another Republican seeking his party's nomination, has about $491,000 in reserves after spending $686,000 in 2021. 

GOP candidate Karrin Taylor Robson notably collected $1.7 million in individual donations, more than any other Republican in the gubernatorial race. Financial reports show Robson ended the year with nearly $3 million on hand and her campaign is characterizing her savings as an advantage over her competitors.

“For months, Kari Lake has promised record-breaking finance numbers. But it’s Karrin Taylor Robson who has the resources necessary to win," Taylor Robson's campaign wrote in a statement.

Records show Taylor Robson loaned about $1.9 million to her campaign. 

Lake, a former Fox 10 news anchor, raised $1.4 million in individual contributions and spent about $1 million in 2021. 

Lake notably spent about $56,000 for campaign events at properties tied to former President Donald Trump, who has endorsed Lake and appeared on stage with her at his recent rally in Florence.

Finance reports show up to $52,000 was spent by Lake's campaign at Mar-a-Lago, the Florida property purchased by Trump in the 1980s.

When asked about a recent Forbes article detailing her expenditures at Trump properties, Lake told KFYI radio station Tuesday that the media was "lashing out" because they consider her a "threat" to the system. 

Lake's campaign has further said they're not intimidated by the cash reserves other Republican candidates are sitting on going into 2022.

“I’ve spent my money building a big lead. I’m pretty sure my opponents would happily trade their cash for my results,” Lake said in a statement to the Arizona Mirror.

Democrat Katie Hobbs raised over $2 million in donations, more than any other candidate in the gubernatorial race. She spent about $1.6 million throughout the year and has saved a reserve of about $1.4 million. 

Despite a recent controversy that's been shrouding Hobbs' campaign, she still managed to end 2021 ahead financially of her two Democratic opponents. 

Former state legislator Aaron Lieberman ended the year with about $767,000 and former Nogales Mayor Marco Lopez has about $253,000. 

RELATED: Katie Hobbs issues apology for 2015 firing of African-American senate staffer

RELATED: Arizona Treasurer Yee drops out of GOP race for governor

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