Miami-Dade County is proving more and more why it's a battleground for the Florida Legislature this year.
Candidates for the four competitive Florida Senate seats in Miami-Dade have raised about $1.9 million over the past four months, an analysis of newly filed campaign finance reports showed.
Current Miami Republican Sens. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla and Anitere Flores raised almost $600,000 between them in May alone in their bids for re-election in newly redrawn districts.
And that's not counting lucrative help that's starting to pour in from an arm of the state party, which would like to keep as many Republicans in the Senate as possible.
Because of redistricting, several Miami-Dade County seats are in play in November. Democrats see an opening to win potentially a few more seats in the Senate and narrow the Republican's 26-14 majority.
But despite fielding competitive candidates, Democrats are falling behind in the fundraising game.
From Feb. 1 -- after which time most candidates filed for their current races once the redrawn districts were set -- through May, Republican state Senate candidates together have raised three times as much as the Democrats across three of Miami-Dade's four competitive races. That's a valuable advantage because the cost to advertise on radio and TV in Miami is among the most expensive in the state.