Thursday, April 24, 2014
By Steve Mistler firstname.lastname@example.org
State House Bureau
Gov. Paul LePage has raised nearly $340,000 for his 2014 re-election bid, according to a campaign finance report filed with the state late Monday.
In this June 26, 2013 file photo, Gov. Paul LePage speaks to reporters shortly after the Maine House and Senate both voted to override his veto of the state budget. LePage has raised nearly $340,000 for his 2014 re-election bid, according to a campaign finance report filed with the state late Monday.
Eliot Cutler, right, who began drawing contributions in February, had more than $430,000 in donations. U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud generated $313,000 in a 17-day period after he announced that he will explore a run for governor.
Staff File Photos
That puts the governor in the same range as his two top rivals, although his fundraising for the past six months was less than his challengers' and slightly off his own pace from last year.
LePage's re-election committee posted $123,000 in contributions for the first half of this year, according to records from the state ethics commission.
It collected $135,000 in the first six months of 2012.
LePage's campaign submitted his report just before the deadline of 11:59 p.m. Monday.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud and independent Eliot Cutler posted their semi-annual reports earlier Monday in an effort to tout their fundraising for next year's gubernatorial election.
Cutler, who began drawing contributions in February, had more than $430,000 in donations. Michaud generated $313,000 in a 17-day period after he announced that he will explore a run for governor.
LePage's re-election committee has been active since December 2011, although the governor didn't announce until last month that he has decided to run.
Not included in LePage's fundraising report is money raised July 2 at a high-profile fundraiser in Kennebunkport headlined by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
That event was held two days after the June 30 reporting deadline, and the campaign has not disclosed how much money the fundraiser generated.
Maine's U.S. Sen. Susan Collins and former Sen. Olympia Snowe were honorary hosts of the fundraiser.
Neither Republican reported contributions to LePage in the most recent report, although Snowe's husband, former Gov. John McKernan, gave LePage the maximum of $3,000 in 2012.
LePage's fundraising for the first half of this year was restricted because a sitting governor cannot receive donations during a legislative session from corporations that deploy lobbyists.
LePage took in $73,750 from companies in early 2011 and 2012.
This year, with the Legislature in session for much of the reporting period, he raised just $22,550 from companies.
LePage has collected $227,565 from individuals who donated more than $50, including $79,650 this year.
More than $195,000 of those donations have come from donors with Maine addresses.
LePage has received $31,600 from out-of-state donors giving more than $50.
Donors who give less than $50 are not identified by name or address in the reports.
LePage has received more than $5,500 from donors who have given $50 or less.
By comparison, Cutler has raised more than $241,000 from Maine donors and $190,000 from out-of state donors.
Michaud has raised $262,000 from Maine donors and $51,100 from out-of-state donors.
LePage has received more than $10,000 from political action committees, while Michaud has taken in $12,800 from political action committees. Cutler has not received money from PACs.
Michaud had more than $70,000 in contributions for his 2014 congressional re-election bid before he turned his focus to the governor's office last month.
State law allows only $3,000 of that to be donated directly to his state campaign, although the money can be used by the Maine Democratic Party to support a gubernatorial bid.
Cutler's Republican and Democratic opponents have a fundraising advantage because they can accept donations of as much as $3,000.
The limit is $1,500 for the primary election and $1,500 for the general election, but money that isn't used for the primary can be used for the general election.
Cutler will not have a primary, so he cannot solicit more than $1,500 per donor.
Three other candidates reported fundraising results this week.
Former independent U.S. Senate candidate Steve Woods is running as a Democrat in the 2014 governor's race.
Woods reported no contributions to his campaign, but a $50,000 contribution of his own, according to The Associated Press.
Independent Lee Schultheis of Freeport showed $5,000 through Monday, all of it from himself and his family.
Green Independent David Slagger showed that he raised $400.
Steve Mistler can be contacted at 620-7016 or at: