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Former state Republican Party chairman Duf Sundheim raises $241,000 for U.S. Senate bid

U.S. Senate GOP candidate George "Duf" Sundheim, a Silicon Valley lawyer who led the state Republican Party during the recall of Democratic Gov. Gray Davis, announced Wednesday that his campaign has raised $241,000 in contributions this year.

U.S. Senate GOP candidate George “Duf” Sundheim, a Silicon Valley lawyer who led the state Republican Party during the recall of Democratic Gov. Gray Davis, announced Wednesday that his campaign has raised $241,000 in contributions this year.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

George “Duf” Sundheim, a Silicon Valley lawyer and former chairman of the state Republican Party, raised $241,000 for his campaign to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer.

Sundheim touted his ability to attract such financial support for a campaign he officially launched just over a month ago, crediting it, in part, to the backing he has received from former Secretary of State George Shultz and Cisco Systems Chairman John Chambers, the co-chairs of his campaign.

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FOR THE RECORD:

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An earlier version of this article misspelled former Secretary of State George Shultz’s last name as Schultz.

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“The people of California are tired of the professional political class of both parties who make promises that they never keep,” Sundheim said in a statement he released with his campaign finance report. “For over a decade, we have taken on the establishment of both parties and won.”

Sundheim reported having $130,345 cash on hand as of Sept. 30, and spending $110,772 on his campaign, according to his report to the Federal Election Commission.

Sundheim provided a copy of his campaign finance report to the Los Angeles Times. Thursday is the deadline for Senate candidates to file their reports to the federal elections agency for campaign money raised and spent between July 1 and Sept. 30.

Among his biggest contributors were attorneys and financial and real estate investors, many from the Bay Area, and Silicon Valley technology firm executives. The list includes Shultz, brokerage firm founder Charles Schwab and Brooks Firestone, a former Santa Barbara County supervisor and heir of tire magnate Harvey Firestone. Shultz and Schwab each contributed $2,700 to Sundheim’s primary campaign, the maximum allowed, and Firestone donated $2,600.

Chambers was among those supporters who contributed the maximum — $5,400 — to both Sundheim’s primary and general election campaign accounts. He was joined by Abraham Sofaer, senior fellow in foreign policy and national security affairs at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, Roland Underhill of Underhill Investments in Greenbrae and Palo Alto real estate investor Boyd Smith.

Venture capitalist Bill Draper donated $1,000 to Sundheim’s campaign.

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The bulk of Sundheim’s campaign expenditures were for developing his website and social media strategy, as well as for fundraising and travel.

Sundheim led the state Republican Party from 2003 to 2007, a period that included the recall of Democratic Gov. Gray Davis and the election of Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican, as his replacement.

Sundheim practiced business law from 1980 to 2002, with clients that included video game firms and manufacturers of theme-park rides. Recently he has served as a court-appointed mediator, as well as a private mediator.

Sundheim’s Republican rivals in the Senate race include Contra Costa County lawyer Tom Del Beccaro, who also served as chairman of the state Republican Party, and GOP Assemblyman Rocky Chavez of Oceanside. On Wednesday, Chavez reported raising $93,579 this year, and having $9,528 cash on hand.

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The two top Democrats in the race are Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris and Rep. Loretta Sanchez of Garden Grove.


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