Whitmer has raised $8.5 million so far in 2021
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) has raised $8.5 million so far this year for her reelection bid, a larger haul than any gubernatorial candidate in the state has raised in any previous off year.
Whitmer’s campaign said in a press release that the governor has over $10 million cash on hand and that the total amount she raised is already over $500,000 more than she hauled in during the entire 2018 cycle. Whitmer has now raised over $14 million for the 2022 cycle and has taken in money from over 25,000 contributors.
“Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has led Michigan through the greatest public health crisis in a century and this report is a testament to the enormous trust people have in her ability to put Michigan first and continue leading our state forward, creating jobs and getting our economy moving again,” said Mark Fisk, spokesperson for the Whitmer campaign.
Whitmer’s fundraising prowess will likely prove key in one of the nation’s marquee gubernatorial contests.
The governor won her first term in 2018 by just under 10 points and immediately emerged as a top GOP target.
Republicans are particularly eager to tap into displeasure among the base over her handling of the coronavirus pandemic. Besides riling up the GOP over school and business closures, Whitmer also sparked outrage over violations of her coronavirus restrictions, including when she was seen in a large group at a bar in May and earlier in the year traveled to Florida to visit her elderly father.
A slew of Republicans has already announced challenges to Whitmer. Several heavy hitters, including Republican National Committee (RNC) chair Ronna McDaniel, former Detroit Police Department Chief James Craig and former GOP Senate nominee John James have also either expressed interest in running or are considered potential candidates.
The GOP interest in the race combined with Whitmer’s war chest is likely to make the gubernatorial race an expensive midterm contest. But Whitmer’s team expressed confidence that the governor would prove victorious after the record-breaking haul.
“This record-breaking fundraising achievement shows that Michiganders understand Gov. Whitmer is a tireless fighter who puts Michigan first,” said Brieann Sauer, the campaign’s finance director. “The campaign is well-positioned to communicate the Governor’s proven track record of standing up for middle-class families, rebuilding the Michigan economy, making the largest investment in K-12 education in our state’s history without raising taxes, and fixing the damn roads.”