- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 3, 2016

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) - The contenders for Harry Reid’s seat in the U.S. Senate said they raised similar amounts in the last three months of 2015, although the Republican candidate has more in the bank.

Former Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto, a Democrat, reported raising more than $1.3 million in the last quarter, and ended the year with $2 million cash on hand. Her campaign said 93 percent of contributors gave less than $200.

“The grassroots momentum and support for Catherine in this race shows that Nevadans recognize the clear choice in this election - that Catherine is the candidate who will solve problems in Washington,” campaign manager Scott Fairchild said in a statement, adding that her opponent “contributed to the partisan gridlock while serving in Congress.”

Three-term Republican Rep. Joe Heck reported raising $1.2 million in the last quarter, while his campaign has $2.9 million cash on hand. Heck’s spokesman said the fundraising numbers show Nevadans want a change from decades under the leadership of Reid - a Democrat who supports Cortez Masto.

“After 30 years of Harry Reid, Nevadans are ready for real leadership in Washington, D.C.,” Heck spokesman Brian Baluta said. “They’ve seen the world is a dangerous place and there’s one candidate who is qualified to stand up for Nevada families and keep them safe - Dr. Joe Heck.”

Heck supporters have run commercials criticizing Cortez Masto, who served two terms as Nevada’s top prosecutor, for backing a nuclear agreement with Iran that Heck opposes.

Cortez Masto supporters have slammed Heck for votes to repeal the health care law and defund Planned Parenthood.

The race is expected to be among the most competitive in the country.

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