Saujani raises nearly half a million for public advocate’s race; Squadron follows, with James yet to file

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Reshma Saujani, who mounted a primary challenge to Rep. Carolyn Maloney in 2010, raised just under half a million dollars during the latest six months for her campaign for public advocate.

Saujani raised a total of $493,473 during the latest filing period, according to her campaign, which now has $651,462 on hand. That figure includes more than $71,000 in matchable funds over the last six months.

That puts her slightly ahead of State Senator Daniel Squadron over the latest filing period. Squadron reported raising $375,000 in the last six months, with $75,000 eligible for matching funds over that period. Squadron has about $665,000 on hand, and has raised about $40,000 more in total matchable funds, which would give him an advantage of a couple hundred thousand dollars.

Saujani recently served as a deputy public advocate under Bill de Blasio, after trying to unseat congresswoman Carolyn Maloney in 2010. 

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She raised nearly $1.5 million for that race and generated an outsize amount of media interest—including a front-page story in the Washington Post—as a young outsider trying to topple a longtime incumbent. Saujani tried to focus on her parents' story as political refugees who fled from Uganda under Idi Amin, while Maloney's camp tried to focus attention on her prior work as a hedge fund.

Lately, Saujani founded a program to teach young girls computer programming, called Girls Who Code, which partnered with Twitter in June. A spokesperson for Saujani's campaign said a number of her donations came from the tech sector, and that they brought in 150 donations on filing day, largely through social media.

"All over the city, New Yorkers are engaging in this campaign because they share our vision for innovation and advocacy," said Saujani, through a spokesperson. "Our message of supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs, closing the gender gap in technology and engineering, and standing up for New York's immigrant communities is resonating and giving us the momentum to run a successful campaign."

Squadron is also an accomplished fund-raiser with ties to some of the city's deep pockets. He previously served as an aide to Sen. Chuck Schumer, and helped co-write the senator's book.

"2013 will be a pivotal year of transition for our city--and New York families need a fighter who is ready and willing to stand up for them," Squadron said in a press release touting his numbers. "I'm incredibly honored by this show of support from New Yorkers around our city, and it’s clear we will have the resources to run an aggressive, five-borough campaign."

Councilwoman Letitia James, who has also expressed interest in the seat but is not known as an aggressive fund-raiser, has yet to file.

This article has been updated with to note the numbers with total matchable funds.