Campaign finance requirements govern how much money candidates may receive from individuals and organizations, how often they must report those contributions, and how much individuals, organizations, and political entities may contribute to campaigns.
While campaign finance is not the only factor in electoral outcomes, successful fundraising can provide a candidate with advantages during a campaign. Fundraising can also indicate party momentum.
This article lists top fundraisers among Michigan statewide officeholders and candidates, overall and by party. It is based on campaign finance reports that officeholders in and candidates for statewide elected offices submitted to the Michigan Secretary of State. It includes activity between July 1, 2022, and Dec. 31, 2022.
Statewide political positions are typically offices in the executive and judicial branches of government rather than the legislative, and they most often represent all citizens in the state, rather than those in a particular district.
Top Michigan statewide fundraisers by party
The top fundraisers among Michigan statewide officeholders and candidates are shown below. Individuals are presented with the office that they were on the ballot for in 2022, if applicable. If no office is indicated, the person was an incumbent and was not on the ballot in 2022.
In the Democratic Party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:
- Gretchen Whitmer (Governor) – $9,756,027
- Dana Nessel (Attorney General) – $2,635,626
- Jocelyn Benson (Secretary of State) – $2,332,633
- Michael Behm (University of Michigan Board of Regents) – $59,595
- Katherine White (University of Michigan Board of Regents) – $40,699
In the Republican Party, the top fundraisers in the most recent semiannual reporting period were:
- Tudor Dixon (Governor) – $7,362,895
- Kristina Karamo (Secretary of State) – $796,022
- Matthew DePerno (Attorney General) – $771,799
- Lena Epstein (University of Michigan Board of Regents) – $319,210
- Perry Johnson (Governor) – $270,000
Overall, Democratic officeholders and candidates raised $14.9 million in this period. Republican officeholders and candidates raised $10.3 million. Combined, all statewide officeholders and candidates in the July 1, 2022, through Dec. 31, 2022, filing period raised $25.3 million.
The five largest Democratic fundraisers were responsible for 99 percent of all Democratic statewide officeholder and candidate fundraising. The five largest Republican fundraisers were responsible for 93 percent of all Republican statewide officeholder and candidate fundraising.
The table below provides additional data from the campaign finance reports from the top 10 fundraisers during this period.
|TOP 10 FUNDRAISERS – Michigan STATEWIDE OFFICEHOLDERS AND CANDIDATES (July 1, 2022, through Dec. 31, 2022)|
|Name||Party Affiliation||Office Sought||Raised||Spent|
|Governor Gretchen Whitmer||Democratic Party||Governor||$9,756,027||$21,746,986|
|Tudor Dixon||Republican Party||Governor||$7,362,895||$7,015,025|
|Attorney General Dana Nessel||Democratic Party||Attorney General||$2,635,626||$4,632,847|
|Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson||Democratic Party||Secretary of State||$2,332,633||$4,274,298|
|Kristina Karamo||Republican Party||Secretary of State||$796,022||$952,051|
|Matthew DePerno||Republican Party||Attorney General||$771,799||$820,029|
|Lena Epstein||Republican Party||University of Michigan Board of Regents||$319,210||$339,760|
|Perry Johnson||Republican Party||Governor||$270,000||$158,908|
|Ralph Rebandt||Republican Party||Governor||$164,055||$168,951|
|Garrett Soldano||Republican Party||Governor||$144,529||$1,142,811|
Campaign finance reporting periods
The data above are based on campaign finance reports that candidate committees submitted to the Michigan Secretary of State. Candidate committees represent individuals who have run for state or local office at any point, including past and present officeholders. This article does not include non-candidate committees. Transparency USA publishes campaign finance data following major reporting deadlines.
This article is a joint publication from Ballotpedia and Transparency USA, who are working together to provide campaign finance information for state-level elections. Learn more about our work here.