Primary challenge to Rep. Ilhan Omar attracts big money
July 15, 2020
Millions of dollars are pouring into the primary race for Minnesota's Fifth Congressional District, where opposition to Minneapolis U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar is fueling an unprecedented surge in donations to her top Democratic opponent, political newcomer Antone Melton-Meaux.
Melton-Meaux, a mediation lawyer who emerged on the DFL scene late last year to challenge Omar, told the Star Tribune he raised a staggering $3.2 million between April and the end of June, with $2 million cash left in the bank before the Aug. 11 primary. He dramatically outraised Omar, who took in $471,624 during the same time period. Omar's campaign said she has $1,111,861 left on hand ahead of the primary election.
The fundraising gap would be striking for any newcomer challenging an incumbent, but it's especially notable in a race against Omar, a freshman Democrat and member of "the Squad" who has risen to prominence as one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress. Omar herself is a prolific fundraiser, fueled in part by her national profile and her unabashed criticism of President Donald Trump.