- Associated Press - Friday, April 15, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - U.S. Rep. Mia Love and her Democratic challenger Doug Owens have added a combined million dollars to their campaign accounts so far this year as they prepare to face off again in November, according to new federal fundraising reports.

Love, the former mayor of Saratoga Springs, raised about $602,000 from January through early April of this year as she faces her first re-election test this November. No Republican has stepped up to challenge her for the party’s nomination this month, leaving her to square off with Owens, who raised about $399,000 so far this year.

Theirs is the closest matchup in the heavily Republican state this year and will likely continue to be Utah’s most expensive race, as it has been for several election cycles.

In the first three months of 2016, Love spent about half of what she raised and finished the first quarter of the year with more than $1 million in her campaign account.

Owens, a Salt Lake City attorney and son of former U.S. Rep. Wayne Owens, spent less than a third of the money he brought in so far this year. He’s entering the next fundraising period with about $766,000 for his bid to unseat Love.



He put up a strong challenge two years ago, collecting 47 percent of the vote to Love’s 50 percent despite his status as a political newcomer.

The congressional district they’re running in, Utah’s 4th, is the state’s most competitive. Before Love was elected in 2014, the seat covering Salt Lake City suburbs and north-central regions of the state was held by Democrat Jim Matheson.

Campaign finance reports for Utah’s three other congressional districts were also available Friday, a deadline to report:

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Rep. Rob Bishop, running for an eighth term in Utah’s 1st district, raised about $113,000 and spent $88,000. He finished the first quarter sitting on about $325,000. His GOP challenger, David Yu-Lin Chiu, has not filed a report. Peter Clemens, an Ogden doctor who is running as a Democrat for the 1st District, raised just under $20,000. Clemens spent about $6,000 and had $13,000 left over.

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In Utah’s 2nd District, Republican Rep. Chris Stewart received about $110,000 in recent months. Stewart spent about $85,000 and came into April with $270,000 in his campaign account. His Democratic challenger, businesswoman Charlene Albarran, raised $174,000 and spent about half that, finishing the quarter with about $134,000. The 2nd District covers most of Salt Lake City and extends west to the Nevada line and south to Arizona.

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Jason Chaffetz, a four-term congressman representing Salt Lake City suburbs and the state’s region, raised about $123,000 in the first three months of 2016. He spent about $44,000 more than he brought in, but he still had $544,000 left over. His challenger for the GOP nomination, Brigham Young University information technology professor Chia-Chi Teng, reported about $177,000 in contributions. But $170,000 of that was money that Teng loaned to his campaign. Teng spent about $209,000 and had $8,000 left over. A recent fundraising report had not yet been filed mid-day Friday for Democrat Stephen Tryon.

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