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Democrat Rankin qualifies to challenge Jeff Atwater for CFO


Democrat William Rankin of Deerfield Beach has qualified to run against Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, the Republican incumbent. Rankin qualified today by paying the required fees.

His campaign is limping along. As of the end of May, Rankin reported having spent $13,356, more than the $13,056 he raised for the race. Rankin also loaned the campaign $10,600 of his own money.

By comparison, Atwater has raised $1.9 million and spent $96,499 as of May 31.

Rankin's fundraising has picked up in recent months, however. After raising only $474 from January through March, he collected $2,431 in April and $4,950 in May.

Rankin has been mostly invisible on the campaign trail, though his expenditures report shows dozens of charges for food and gas.

Early in his candidacy, he was dogged by questions about his background and qualifications.

According to financial records he submitted to the state, Rankin had a net worth of $371,650 at the end of 2013. Atwater's net worth is $1.9 million.

Rankin reported as income $144,057 from a bankruptcy settlement, $6,828 in veteran disability pay and $2,534 in retired military pay. The biggest asset he reported is by estimating a value of $300,000 on a media company he founded called "Millionaire Lifestyle."