|Green-Rainbow Party candidate Jill Stein needed to submit $125,000 in qualifying donations by last Friday’s deadline. The gubernatorial candidate fell short by just $3,000. (Stephan Savoia/ Associated Press)|
Jill Stein narrowly misses requirement for public funding
Campaign of rival Cahill to benefit
Green-Rainbow Party gubernatorial candidate Jill Stein has failed to qualify for up to $519,000 in public funding, a setback for her struggling candidacy but one that gives Governor Deval Patrick a boost.
Stein, who needed to submit $125,000 in qualifying donations by last Friday’s deadline, fell short by just $3,000, according to Brad Balzer, deputy director of the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance. Candidates have to prove they can raise a certain amount of money on their own before getting public money.
With her now ineligible for public funds, state Treasurer Timothy P. Cahill, who has qualified for the money and will not have to divide the pool of funds with her, will get an infusion of $750,000 for his independent campaign.
That is potentially good for Patrick, because it lowers the profile of Stein’s challenge from the left, and potentially bad for Republican Charles D. Baker, some of whose supporters believe the better Cahill does, the more it takes votes away from the GOP ticket. (A Globe poll released this week, however, suggested that Cahill voters, if they abandon the state treasurer, would fall equally to Patrick and Baker.)
The news is a blow to Stein’s hopes of mounting a serious third-party bid. In 2002, she received less than 4 percent of the vote when she ran in a race that included nominees of both major parties and two other minor-party candidates. Stein also failed to qualify for public funds that year.
That Stein fell short of qualifying this year will also add to the public funding for Attorney General Martha Coakley and state auditor candidates Suzanne Bump, the Democrat, and Mary Connaughton, the Republican, all of whom have submitted enough qualifying donations.
They will divide the remaining $288,000 of the total $1.03million that was appropriated this year to provide public funding.
In addition, state campaign regulators are determining whether William C. Campbell, the Republican nominee for secretary of state, may also be eligible for those funds.
Frank Phillips can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.