Campaign finance reports filed Oct. 11 covering the period from July 1-Sept. 29 show Republican candidate Alexandra del Moral Mealer raised over $4.9 million—more than three times the amount raised by the Democratic incumbent County Judge Lina Hidalgo.

Del Moral Mealer’s contributions over three months are greater than the $2.88 million raised by both candidates combined during the previous reporting period. Spending close to $3.5 million, del Moral Mealer nearly tripled Hidalgo’s spending, but Hidalgo maintained almost $300,000 more in contributions by the end of the reporting period.

In an Oct. 11 news release, Hidalgo’s campaign said Hidalgo had received 5,350 contributions in total from 3,440 contributors and that out of individual donors, more than 80% contributed $100 or less.

“Judge Hidalgo does not accept donations from county vendors and requires every donor to certify they will not seek a contract with the county within a year,” Toni Harrison, a spokesperson for Hidalgo’s campaign, said in a statement to Community Impact.

But del Moral Mealer claimed that over a third of Hidalgo’s money came from out of state in a statement to Community Impact, including significant amounts from New York and California.

“I am proud that over 99% of my contributions come from Texans and over 86% from Harris County,” del Moral Mealer said. “All my donors expect of me is getting control of our crime problem and running an ethical administration.“

Officialls with Del Moral Mealer's campaign cited the campaign finance

A closer look

During the July 1-Sept. 29 reporting period, over 76% of the sum of del Moral Mealer’s total contributions came from donors who contributed $5,000 or more, compared to over 59% of Hidalgo’s contributions, according to a Community Impact analysis of the finance reports.

Notably, 11 donors contributed over $100,000 apiece, making up over 39% of the sum of del Moral Mealer’s total contributions. Four of those donors gave at least $100,000 during the previous reporting period, including top donor Richard Weekley—a real estate developer and co-founder of David Weekley Homes—who donated three times for a total of $400,000 in the most recent period and $205,000 in the previous.

Alan Hassenflu, CEO of Fidelis Realty Partners, a commercial real estate company based in Texas, donated twice for a total of $350,000, surpassing his $100,000 donation on June 30. And David Modesett, president of Vega Energy Partners, an energy trader based in Houston, donated $100,000.

Weekley, Hassenflu and Modesett also donated $100,000 each to Jack Morman, the Republican candidate for Precinct 2 commissioner, during the most recent reporting period; Morman had the edge over incumbent Precinct 2 Commissioner Adrian Garcia with almost $540,000 in campaign contributions to Garcia’s $324,000, but Garcia outspent Morman $1.17 million to $354,000.

Billionaire Jeffrey Hildebrand, CEO of energy company Hilcorp, donated $100,000 to del Moral Mealer’s campaign; his wife Melinda donated $250,000.

For her part, Hidalgo received two $100,000-plus donations: $103,125 from Neal Manne, partner at Susman Godfrey LLP, and $100,000 from liberal philanthropist Liz Simons, co-founder of the Heising-Simons Foundation, which funds organizations focused on environmentalist policy, education and human rights issues.

Of the over $899,000 in contributions from donors who gave over $5,000, more than 20% came from donors with out-of-state addresses, including from California and New York.

For more information on the candidates for Harris County judge, see a Community Impact Q&A here.