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Cuomo raises $8.5M for campaign, far outpacing foe

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ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo raised another $8.5 million for his re-election bid, adding to a campaign account that now boasts a balance of more than $35 million, more than 14 times his opponent's.

The numbers come from campaign finance reports filed Tuesday and show that Cuomo, the Democratic incumbent, continues to have a substantial advantage over Republican candidate Rob Astorino, whose campaign account has a balance of $2.4 million.

The disclosures cover a six-month period that ended last week.

Recent donors to Cuomo's campaign include some recognizable names, including actress Mariska Hargitay, the star of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit ($5,000); California grocery store magnate Ron Burkle ($60,800); moviemaker Steven Spielberg ($25,000) and hedge fund manager Stanley Druckenmiller ($60,800).

Cuomo's campaign paid $6.8 million in campaign expenses over the filing period. He began the year with $33 million in his account.

Expenses listed in the report include payments for campaign staffers, consultants and pollsters; agencies that create television advertisements as well as food and beverages for fundraisers.

Astorino, now the county executive in Westchester County, raised $3.4 million throughout the period. He took in $2.8 million from more than 4,000 donors and also transferred $600,000 from his county campaign fund.

After expenses were deducted, Astorino's balance stood at $2.4 million on Friday.

Polls have consistently given Cuomo a commanding 2-to-1 lead over Astorino. One of Astorino's greatest hurdles may be his lack of name recognition, with polls suggesting that many voters have no opinion of him.

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