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News Guide: Presidential candidates file fundraising reports

WASHINGTON (AP) — Presidential candidates are filing their initial fundraising reports on Wednesday, offering a glimpse at how they’re raising and spending money.

The documents cover April 1 to June 30, a time period when many kicked off their presidential campaigns.

But the reports tell only part of the money story. Candidates also benefit from super PACs personalized to help them win. These groups can raise money in unlimited amounts and are due to share their fundraising details with the Federal Election Commission at the end of the month.

Wednesday’s FEC highlights:

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CLINTON SPENDING

Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign, which took in more than $47 million in contributions, spent more than $18 million in its first two and a half months. The money went to infrastructure in early primary states and an employee payroll of several hundred. More than 60 percent of Clinton’s donors were women.

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BUSH BACKERS

The biggest donor to Jeb Bush’s presidential campaign: Jeb Bush. The Republican former Florida governor paid for $388,720 in services such as legal and strategic consulting to get his bid rolling. Similarly, Clinton herself provided paid for $279,000 worth of services for her campaign. In all, Bush raised $11.4 million between his mid-June kickoff and the end of the month. By far the fundraising leader in a field of 17 GOP contenders, Bush also will benefit from the $103 million he helped his super PAC raise in the first six months of the year. Bush’s campaign ended June with just under $8.4 million left in the bank.

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SMALL DOLLARS

Small donors are underwriting the presidential campaigns of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, a Democrat, and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, a Republican. Three-fourths of Sanders’ fundraising came from contributions of $200 or less. In all, including a $1.5 million transfer from his dormant Senate campaign, Sanders pulled in $15.2 million through the end of June and closed the month with $12.2 million in available cash. For Carson, those low dollars comprised 68 percent of the $10.6 million he has raised so far.

By comparison, 3 percent of Bush’s total haul came from small donations, and 17 percent of Clinton’s.

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TRUMP TROVE

New York business mogul Donald Trump, who said he wouldn’t need donors because he’s so wealthy, is indeed funding his own bid for the Republican presidential nomination. He loaned his campaign $1.8 million. In separate documents he filed Wednesday, he pegged his net worth at upwards of $10 billion. He also raised about $92,000 for his campaign without even trying; he hasn’t held any fundraisers or sent out any emails soliciting funds.

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RETURNING CONTENDERS

Rick Santorum begins his second bid for the Republican presidential nomination having raised $607,000 through the end of June. The former Pennsylvania senator came in second to Mitt Romney in the 2012 race and over the course of that primary raised some $23 million. Another returning presidential contestant, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, raised about $2 million for his new campaign, three times the entire amount he raised in the 2008 contest. He won in Iowa and other early states before dropping out for lack of money.

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OTHER CANDIDATES

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has raised $14.3 million since he became the first major presidential candidate in late March. That includes a transfer from his Senate campaign of $250,000. Of contributions, 41 percent gave $200 or less. Cruz had $8.5 million in cash left at the end of June.

Carly Fiorina, a California former technology executive, raised $1.7 million for her campaign_43 percent of which came from small contributions. She had nearly $1 million left as of June 30.

–Texas Gov. Rick Perry reported raising $1.1 million, about half of which he spent setting up his campaign. He announced his bid on June 4.

–Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s first fundraising report shows he raised about $579,000. He began running June 24, making him one of the most recent entrants to the GOP contest.

–On the Democratic side, former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee is largely paying for his campaign out of his own pocket: More than 90 percent of the $396,000 he reported raising was a personal loan.

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