In one of the fiercest city races this campaign season, District 24 Metro Councilman Jason Holleman and his well-connected challenger, Sarah Lodge Tally, have reported raising a combined amount of more than $80,000 during this reporting period — a hefty sum for a district race.
Holleman took in $30,651.73 between April 1 and June 30. The incumbent had more than $30,000 on hand from the previous reporting period, and he still has just over $45,000 in the bank. Holleman’s campaign spent a hair under $16,000 this period.
“I am comfortable that I am raising sufficient funds to get my message out to the voters, and I am proud that the dollars raised in my campaign have come overwhelmingly from people that I have represented for the last four years,” Holleman told The City Paper.
Challenger Tally, an attorney, raised a staggering $50,301.23 from April through June. Some of that appears to have come via the various political connections she and her family — her father is powerful Democratic lobbyist Dick Lodge — have made and maintained with Nashville’s players. Among those who have contributed to Tally's campaign so far are former Gov. Phil Bredesen ($1,000), former gubernatorial candidate Mike McWherter ($500), District Attorney Torry Johnson ($250), former Tennessee Department of Transportation Commissioner Gerald Nicely ($250), and Leigh Walton, an attorney and treasurer for Mayor Karl Dean’s re-election campaign ($500).
During this reporting period, the Tally campaign spent $20,708.30. She has just shy of $30,000 in the bank.
"We're excited about the amount we have raised," Tally said. "Our fundraising shows the strong support that I have received since beginning this campaign. We've received contributions from all parts of the district, in amounts from $10 to $1,400."
Holleman has also raised more than $50,000 in this race, just not as quickly as Tally did. For the period from Jan. 16 through March 31, he reported pulling in $20,025. Their combined overall total — which stretches past $100,000 — is among the highest for any two-candidate Metro Council district race in the city government’s history.
This story has been updated.