Michigan Campaign Finance Network

Self-funding huge in congressional primaries

Michigan candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives raised $7 million in the 2nd quarter of 2014. Self-funding by candidates is a major factor in the 3rd, 4th and 11th District primaries.

Independent spenders dominating statewide campaigns

Independent spenders are dominating television advertising related to Michigan's principal statewide political campaigns. Through June 30th, the candidates for governor and United States senator account for less than $4 million out of a total of $17.9 million spent for TV in the campaigns.

Democracy Deformed

As a population, we don't get the representation we vote for. In Michigan's 2012 congressional elections, Republican votes yielded twice as much representation as Democratic votes. That was a highly effective partisan gerrymander.

Top PACs' fundraising up 44%

Fundraising by Michigan's top 150 state political action committees (PACs) is up by $9.9 million, or 44 percent, compared to the top 150 PACs at this point in the 2012 election cycle. See who is raking in the big bucks.

McCutcheon JFC: New weapon of political warfare

What is the practical significance of the Supreme Court's decision in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission? A whole new class of weapon, the McCutcheon joint fundraising committee (JFC), has been created for the American political war of mutually assured destruction. And it puts every federal officeholder in a position to raise millions from a single donor.

Lansing lobbyists spent $35.4M in 2013

Lansing lobbyists spent $35.4 million in 2013 to move their public policy agendas. That total is down by 4.6% from 2012. Much of the detail of who benefits from lobbyists' spending is concealed by reporting thresholds that keep citizens in the dark about who is spending what to influence officeholders and administration officials.

Descending into Dark Money

Record spending and a continuing trend of diminishing accountability for that spending were the major features of Michigan's 2012 state election campaigns. Details are contained in the 2012 Citizen's Guide to Michigan Campaign Finance, released by the Michigan Campaign Finance Network (MCFN).

MCFN coverage of Campaign 2014