By Scott Smith
Record Staff Writer
April 01, 2012 12:00 AM
STOCKTON – Mayoral candidate Jimmie Rishwain has kick-started his campaign with a $100,000 loan to himself, saying he wants to make sure he can respond to his opponents as the race gets hot.
“I want to be competitive,” he said. “I want to be able to answer any comments that other candidates are going to be putting out.”
That sum also puts him ahead of incumbent Mayor Ann Johnston and Tony Stevens, two other candidates who have money backing their candidacies.
Johnston has $57,792 on hand from contributions, and Stevens has $39,000, including $30,000 loaned from his Elk Grove auto dealership.
Mayoral candidates who have raised $1,000 or less are James Butler, Gregory Pitsch, Anthony Silva and Ralph Lee White.
The seven candidates will square off June 5 for the mayor’s seat. A candidate can win in the primary with 50 percent of the vote, plus one. If there is no clear winner, the two top candidates will move on to the Nov. 6 general election.
Rishwain, who served as mayor in the 1960s when City Council members voted on the position, said he has pledges from other supporters.
Johnston in her 2008 race for mayor spent $310,000, according to campaign records at City Hall. In 1996, Ed Chavez spent $236,143 to win his mayoral race.
In three Stockton council races to appear on the June 5 ballot, each of the incumbents has outpace their opponents in fundraising so far.
Vice Mayor Kathy Miller has $60,540, while challenger Randy Hatch’s filings indicate he has no campaign funds. The two are vying in Council District 2.
In District 4, Councilwoman Diana Lowery has $66,407, while challenger Moses Zapien reported $13,754, the most of any council challenger. Theresa Velazquez reported no money.
In District 6, Councilman Dale Fritchen has $36,372 on hand, and challenger Michael Tubbs reported having $5,694.
Contact reporter Scott Smith at (209) 546-8296 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit his blog at recordnet.com/smithblog.