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Fiorina catches up in California money race


Carly Fiorina, former Hewlett-Packard CEO and Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, leaves a polling station in Los Altos Hills, California June 8, 2010, with her husband Frank after casting her ballot in the California primary election. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith
Carly Fiorina, former Hewlett-Packard CEO and Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, leaves a polling station in Los Altos Hills, California June 8, 2010, with her husband Frank after casting her ballot in the California primary election. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - After trailing Democratic rival Sen. Barbara Boxer for months in fund-raising and spending, California Republican Senate hopeful Carly Fiorina is closing the money gap, both parties said on Tuesday.

A Washington-based Republican Party affiliate, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said it was sponsoring a $3 million TV ad campaign in support of Fiorina in the campaign's final week.

The money would pay for an attack ad characterizing Boxer as "self serving" and "ineffective" ahead of Tuesday's midterm elections, the group said.

Democrat-leaning California is one of 10 states the Republicans must pick up to win control of the Senate. The Republicans are seen likely winning control of the House of Representatives.

Earlier this month, Fiorina, the former chief executive officer of computer giant Hewlett-Packard, bolstered her own campaign treasury with loans of $1.25 million in personal funds.

As election day approaches, most polls have showed Boxer leading Fiorina by five or more percentage points, though some recent surveys suggest the race may be tightening.

A Boxer campaign aide acknowledged that Fiorina has been catching up in the money race in recent weeks and that she expects to be outspent in the final days.

Federal Election Commission data show that as of the end of September, Fiorina's campaign had $1.8 million cash on hand and an outstanding debt of $543,000, compared to $6.5 million cash on hand and no debt reported by Boxer's campaign.

Fiorina was admitted to a hospital on Tuesday for treatment of an infection related to reconstructive surgery this summer after breast cancer, but she was expected to make a quick recovery and return to the campaign trail in California.

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