- Associated Press - Monday, January 13, 2014

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor raised $1.1 million in the final three months of last year as he geared up for an expensive and nationally watched fight for a third term, the Arkansas Democrat’s campaign said Monday.

Pryor’s campaign said he raised more than $5.3 million in 2013 and had $4.2 million in the bank at the end of 2013 for his re-election. The deadline for candidates to file their year-end and fourth quarter fundraising reports with the Federal Election Commission is Jan. 31.

Pryor, who was first elected in 2002, is running against freshman Republican Rep. Tom Cotton. Pryor is the only Democratic member of the state’s congressional delegation, and Republicans believe he’s the most vulnerable Senate incumbent seeking re-election this year.

Pryor’s fundraising numbers show he enjoys strong support in Arkansas and will have enough money to mount a strong re-election bid, said his campaign manager Jeff Weaver.

“Heading into the election year, Mark will have every resource to remind voters about his record as a reliable and responsible voice for Arkansas families, while drawing clear contrasts with Congressman Cotton’s reckless agenda that puts his own interests ahead of Arkansans,” Weaver said in a statement released by the campaign.

Cotton spokesman David Ray said the Republican challenger will release his fundraising numbers later this month. Ray dismissed Pryor’s fundraising figures, saying in an email that the Democratic lawmaker is “going to need all that money to distract Arkansans” from a record he said is too closely allied with President Barack Obama.

The two have been engaged in an expensive television ad war since Cotton announced he was challenging Pryor in August, exchanging barbs in spots airing around the state. Outside groups on the right and left have also been airing television ads around the state.


Follow Andrew DeMillo on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ademillo



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