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Campaign finance update for Michigan House and Senate races

September 24, 2010

This year’s election cycle is breaking records across the country and the money raised in Michigan for state races is also on the rise.

According to the Michigan Campaign Finance Network (MCFN) “Candidates for the Michigan Legislature raised $20.9 million and spent $14.5 million through the post-primary campaign reports. That fundraising total is up by 8.3 percent compared to 2006, the last time candidates for both the House and Senate faced the electorate.

When looking at the data MCFN has provided for the two state Senate races in West Michigan one race is financially tight, while the other one is lopsided. In the 28th District Senate race featuring Republican Mark Jansen it would appear that the Democrats are conceding that race. Jansen has raise $96,242 so far, with a total of $44,264 still in his money chest. The Democratic candidate Robin Golden has not raised a cent as of the last reporting period.

The 29th District Senate race is much closer. Republican Dave Hildenbrand has raised $269,927 so far with $134,353 left in his balance. The Democratic candidate David LaGrand has raised $141,536 so far with $30,649 left in his money chest. We can expected to see lots more money being raised and spent on ad campaigns in the remaining 5 weeks of the campaign.

In the State House races in West Michigan there are two races with candidates who are challenging incumbents and have raised no money. In the 74th District House race incumbent Dave Agema (R) has raised $38,828, while the Democratic challenger Leon Chase (D) has not raised any money to date. The same is the case in the 76th District House race where Democratic incumbent Roy Schmidt has raised $107,034, while the Republican challenger Marc Tonnemacher has raised no money.

This is not the case in the 75th District House race where there are no incumbents. Democratic candidate Brandon Dillon was not challenged in the primary and still has $37,561 in his campaign account. The Republican candidate Bing Goei barely beat out fellow Republican Jordon Bush in the Primary election, which has left Goei with only $696 left from the $60,275 he has raised.

According to MCFN the total amount of money raised so far across the state for House races is $10,151,168. In the state Senate races in Michigan a total of $10,755,281 has been raised so far. Combined that is over $20 million that has been raised. Imagine what that kind of money could do if it was spent on housing or other basic rights for people living in Michigan.

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