Gov Candidates Unveil Finance Reports

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Ann Arbor businessman Rick Snyder has continued giving millions to his campaign for Michigan governor, contributing the largest share of the $7.3 million he reported raising as of July 18.

The former president and COO of computer maker Gateway Inc. gave $5.9 million to his campaign, money the Republican has used to dominate the airwaves since launching his first TV ad in early February. The campaign finance report he filed Friday showed he raised $1.4 million from supporters and had $812,000 left in his campaign kitty to spend by the Aug. 3 primary election.

The most intriguing news out of the Republican filings may have been reports showing U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra and Attorney General Mike Cox each raised $1.1 million since the start of the year, although Cox carried over a lot more money from 2009. Polls show the pair are battling for the lead in the five-way race.

Overall, Cox raised $2.9 million and had $147,000 on hand, while Hoekstra raised $1.6 million and had $311,000 left to spend. His bottom line was helped by nearly $140,000 in public matching funds, and he has applied for more.

The player with the biggest amount left to spend is Republican Mike Bouchard, who was sitting atop $846,000 with just two weeks to go before the election. The Oakland County sheriff has pulled in nearly $1.9 million in contributions overall, besting Hoekstra, and received $81,000 in public matching funds.

Democrats had raised and spent far less money in what has been a low-key effort by both House Speaker Andy Dillon and Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero. Dillon raised $1.4 million and had $288,000 on hand, while Bernero raised $743,000 and had $82,000 left. Neither man raised money last year.

Bernero’s records show he got the maximum contribution allowed, $34,000, from the political action committees of the United Auto Workers union and the Michigan Education Association. He moved $46,000 from his mayoral campaign fund.

Dillon moved $100,000 from his state representative campaign fund and $34,000 from the Dillon Leadership Fund to his campaign. He got $15,000 from the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters.

The Blue Cross-Blue Shield of Michigan PAC gave $34,000 each to Dillon, Bouchard and Hoekstra and $10,000 to Bernero. Cox got $33,000 from the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and moved more than $68,000 from other campaign funds he controls. Bouchard moved $159,000 from other campaign committees to his campaign for governor.

State Sen. Tom George, the fifth Republican in the race, raised $343,000 and had about a tenth of that left to use.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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