Published: 24 November 2011 07:20 PM

A pair of candidates vying to represent a newly drawn Riverside County congressional district have launched aggressive fundraising efforts, tapping a diverse array of donors for campaign cash.

With no congressional incumbent in the mix, Democrat Mark Takano and Republican John Tavaglione will need formidable war chests if they want to win in what is expected to be a competitive race in California’s 41st Congressional District. The seat, drawn this summer by the state’s redistricting panel, includes Riverside, Moreno Valley, Norco, Eastvale and Jurupa Valley.

Takano, a longtime member of Riverside Community College District’s board of trustees, and Tavaglione, a Riverside County supervisor, each has raised about $160,000, far outpacing any other non-sitting congressional candidate in the Inland area.

“Fundraising matters a lot because both candidates have to establish name identification,” Claremont McKenna College government professor Jack Pitney said.

Pitney said neither Takano nor Tavaglione can rely on the level of recognition that comes with incumbency, though both have been active in Inland politics for years. And, conversely, neither will benefit from anti-incumbent sentiment, which could be more pronounced than usual in 2012, given the state of the economy.

“Incumbents have enemies, and enemies give money to the enemy’s opponent,” Pitney said.

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