ST. PAUL  (AP) -- Gripped by tight limits during the campaign, labor unions wrote hefty checks to a post-election account for Democrat Mark Dayton after it appeared clear he would win Minnesota's close race for governor.

Newly filed reports with the IRS show organized labor was a key financial force behind Dayton's recount and transition efforts. An analysis by The Associated Press of donations found more than $600,000 from union funds.

All told, Dayton raised $1.9 million after the election.

Many unions, including some representing Minnesota public employees, gave 25 times more than they were able to guide his way during the fall campaign.

The Democratic National Committee and Democratic Governors Association threw in a combined $400,000, and Dayton's father sent him $250,000.

Dayton's spending was mostly for staff, rent, equipment and consultants.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)