St. Louis County Executive-elect Steve Stenger outspent Republican rival Rick Stream by more than three-to-one in what appears to have been the closest contest for that office in decades.
Stenger — a Democrat who won by less than 1,900 votes — spent $3.34 million in his successful bid for the post, according to the final campaign-finance reports due Thursday. Stream reported spending $959,395.
Their combined spending tally appears to barely break the previous record set for the contest in 2010, when County Executive Charlie Dooley and GOP opponent Bill Corrigan spent just under $4 million, combined.
Stenger outraised Stream by an even larger margin. Stenger reported raising just over $3.34 million, compared to Stream’s $803,154. Stream apparently used some money left over from previous legislative campaigns to cover the difference.
Stenger’s final report includes debts of $446,763, most of it in personal loans from himself. Stenger had donated at least $200,000 to his current campaign, as well as other money that he’d given to his previous campaigns for County Council.
Stream reported no debts. He also ended his campaign with a little more left in the bank. Stream reported $40, 542 in the bank as of Nov. 29, compared to $$22,871 for Stenger.
24th District state Senate contest
Also setting a record was the contest for the 24th District state Senate seat, won by Democrat Jill Schupp of Creve Coeur.
Schupp spent $1.18 million, compared to $1.1 million for Republican Jay Ashcroft, according to their final reports. Schupp reported raising $1.7 million, while Ashcroft raised $1.1 million. She had donated almost $240,000 to other campaign committees.
Schupp reported $22,246 remaining in the bank as of Nov. 29, compared to $17,886 for Ashcroft. She reported a debt of $10,497; Ashcroft had no debt.