By Natasha Bach
February 14, 2019

Fundraising for retired astronaut Mark Kelly’s 2020 U.S. Senate campaign is skyrocketing since the Democrat announced Tuesday he’s running to represent Arizona.

In less than 48 hours, Kelly, whose wife is former Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, already has raised $1.1 million in individual contributions, a pace on par with presidential candidates.

The Arizona Republic reports that Kelly, a Democrat, exceeded the $1 million mark by Wednesday evening. In contrast, Democrat Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota who announced her candidacy for president over the weekend, raised $1 million in the first two days.

According to Kelly’s Twitter, his campaign raised $604,000 from more than 9,700 contributions in the first 24 hours, accomplished without the help of corporate PAC money.

Kelly is running to fill the Arizona Senate seat vacated following GOP Sen. John McCain’s death last year. Republican Martha McSally is filling the position on an interim basis until the special election that will be held in 2020, at which time she is expected to run for the seat herself. She was appointed after Republican Sen. Jon Kyl stepped down at the end of last year. The winner of that race will then face re-election in 2022 to serve a full six-year term.

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