RALEIGH -- The money pouring in to North Carolina's governor's race is very telling of the changing political landscape in North Carolina.
This election cycle Republicans are spending far more on their candidates than Democrats.
A big shift in the money game this election season. More money has meant more exposure for candidate Pat McCrory in the governor's race.
"It has allowed McCrory to keep a substantial leap in the polls," said Jonathan Kappler with the North Carolina Free Enterprise Foundation.
The latest public policy polling survey shows the former Charlotte mayor with a double-digit lead over Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton at 50 percent compared to 39 percent.
Kappler said it's a momentum he's kept from the beginning.
"Campaign finances have really favored Pat McCrory and Walter Dalton has really struggled to keep pace and really hasn't," he said.
Dalton's overall fundraising efforts are less than $4 million compared to McCrory who has close to $12 million.
It's a struggle Dalton has had since his late entrance into this race.
“No one thought Dalton had a chance to win. Even people who favored Dalton over McCrory didn't give him money," said Michael Munger, a political science professor at Duke University.
Republicans have become the big spenders this cycle. In one state senate race, Republican candidate Chad Barefoot has garnered more than $800,000 dollars in donations.
"For so long in North Carolina's political history, the Democrats have been much better financed than the republicans have," Kappler said.
But Kappler said the money is needed to compete for the voter's attention especially during a tough presidential campaign.
“Voters sometimes get overwhelmed with campaign messages and therefore aren't responding the campaign ads and mailers the way that they would with other contests going on,” he said.
Once the final votes are tallied next Tuesday, Republicans will know if their efforts were money well spent.
The money raised from both campaigns is still less than Gov. Bev Perdue's $17 million bid in 2008.
She is expected to leave office with about $1 million in campaign funds.