Aanestad, GOP rival to Maldonado for lieutenant governor, is low on campaign funds


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After state Sen. Abel Maldonado voted for a 2009 budget package that included increases in the vehicle tax, sales tax and income tax, many conservatives said the political future of the moderate Republican from Santa Maria was toast. But late in 2009, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger nominated Maldonado as his next lieutenant governor. Still, conservative conventional wisdom insisted Maldonado would face stiff competition in the June primary, where he will face off against Sen. Sam Aanestad, whether or not the Legislature confirms him to the post.

Aanestad’s financial report, filed Monday, reveals a candidate with little resources to take on a figure Schwarzenegger has called his “soul mate.”


Aanestad (R-Grass Valley) raised only $85,000 from donors in 2009. If it were not for a $50,000 loan he gave his campaign on Dec. 29, his campaign treasury would be in the red. He had $97,000 cash on hand, but more than $55,000 in unpaid bills.

Maldonado had not yet filed his report Monday morning.

-- Shane Goldmacher in Sacramento