Late cash infusion fueled close Kansas congressional race

Ron Estes, James Thompson, Chris Rockhold
The combination of photos shows the candidates running in the April 11, 2017 special general election in Kansas' 4th Congressional District to replace former GOP Rep. Mike Pompeo, who was appointed director of the Central Intelligence Agency. They are from left: Republican Ron Estes, a former state treasurer; Democrat James Thompson, a civil rights attorney; and Libertarian Chris Rockhold, a flight instructor. (The Wichita Eagle via AP)

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) – Newly released campaign finance reports show a late infusion of cash from mostly small donors helped Democrat James Thompson mount his surprisingly close congressional race as emboldened Democrats eye a 2018 rematch in the heavily Republican Kansas district.

The margin of victory for Republican Ron Estes in the Kansas 4th District special election on April 11 slid to only seven percentage points from a 31-point margin in November, when incumbent Mike Pompeo was running before he was appointed Trump’s CIA director.

Reports filed late Thursday show that as of May 1 Thompson raised a total of nearly $832,000, compared to about $494,000 Estes raised. Thompson spent about $562,000, while Estes spent about $421,000.

Thompson has about $127,000 left as he mounts his next race. Estes’ campaign had nearly $40,000 left.