Wealthy candidates and wealthy donors turn up in 2022 Michigan campaign finance reports

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Steve Carmody

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Radio Michigan

The latest campaign finance data shows a growing number of Michigan candidates are self-funding their 2022 election campaigns.

Simon Schuster is the executive director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network. He says it helps for a candidate to have a big bank account if he doesn’t have the necessary connections to fundraise.

Schuster cites Republican gubernatorial candidates Perry Johnson and Kevin Rinke as examples of self-funded campaigns. The two plan to spend millions of dollars on their campaigns.

“Wealthier individuals may find that these political offices are more accessible because they can hire consultants and campaign staff and pay for the advertising that some other candidates, who don’t come from wealthy means, have to. very feverishly scrounge and fundraise for,” Schuster says.

The data also shows that having a rich client can help.

For example, former President Donald Trump’s political action committee made significant donations to more than a dozen candidates in Michigan.

“Former President Trump has made no definitive statement about his future in politics,” Schuster said. “So it seems rather that he has chosen to accumulate influence, even more than he already has, by rewarding those who have been loyal to him.”

Although in some cases, Trump campaign donations may have been larger than what is allowed by state law.

Simon Schuster was a guest on the February 3 episode of In the USA. You can hear his full interview in the audio file at the top of this article.

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