Michigan Campaign Finance Network has compiled Michigan House of Representatives candidate campaign finance data to provide an insight into where races stand as voters go to the polls today.
The first is an overall of the money raised by Michigan House candidates, leadership PACs and each party’s caucus.
Democrats overall have outraised Republicans in House races. But the difference in caucus committees, which have much higher contribution limits than candidates do, essentially negates that advantage as these committees can pour huge sums into close races.
Next is each candidate’s fundraising total by donation source. Using the filter options in the upper-right corner, narrow down the totals to see differences in fundraising sources between candidates already in the legislature and those hoping to get there for the first time. There, some obvious differences emerge.
One is that Democrats receive far more small donations (contributions less than $200) than Republicans. They’ve raised about three times as much from six times as many of those donations. This is despite the fact that the open seats in Republican and Democrat-leaning districts are roughly equal, with 13 and 12, respectively, according to the Michigan Information & Research Service.
It’s also clear that incumbents can rely on PACs to fund their campaigns, while challengers largely don’t have that benefit — perhaps an indication of why incumbents are so rarely unseated during a primary.
The advantage incumbents enjoy extends to their spending, visualized by district in the graph below. Since 2019, Republican incumbents have raised more than three times as much as incumbents, though the disparity is smaller among Democrats.