Land Outraises Peters Again in Michigan Senate Race

GOP candidate raises $3.3 million in last quarter

Former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land / AP
July 9, 2014

Republican Terri Lynn Land continues to outraise Rep. Gary Peters (D., Mich.) in the increasingly expensive Michigan Senate race.

Land, former Michigan secretary of state, raised more than $3.3 million in the last quarter, including a $1.2 million infusion of her own money. Peters, a three-term congressman, has struggled to raise cash and brought in about just under $2 million. Peters has yet to outraise Land since entering the race.  These numbers have not yet been submitted to the Federal Elections Commission, which tracks campaign spending.

Land now has $5.25 million in cash-on-hand according to a press release. Her campaign said that the cash advantage reflects the GOP’s ability to connect with Michigan voters.

"Terri Lynn Land has outraised Congressman Peters every quarter because Michiganders are looking for a U.S. Senator who will put Michigan first and stop the job-killing policies that are coming from Congressman Peters and his allies in Washington D.C.," Land spokeswoman Heather Swift said in a statement.

The Peters campaign focused on the Democrat’s improving fundraising numbers, rather than the emerging funding gap.

"Whether it’s his strong background of business and military service or his proven record as an independent voice for Michigan, Gary Peters continues to gain exciting grassroots momentum in this race," Democratic Campaign Manager Paul Tencher said in a press release.

Despite losing the money race, Peters widely outspent Land in the opening months of the campaign. Peters spent $1.8 million, $1 million more than Land, through March 31, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Land’s fundraising advantage has been diffused somewhat by large expenditures by labor unions.

The SEIU spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on attack ads in the Spring, while the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) spent more than $600,000 on an attack ad in June.

Peters’ biggest ally has been Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.). The Senate Majority Fund, Reid’s super PAC, has spent $2.3 million on attack ads in the race, according to FEC filings.

Peters is running on an environmentalist agenda, including support for the proposed EPA regulations that are expected to eliminate thousands of coal jobs. Those positions put him in lockstep with hedge fund billionaire and radical environmentalist Tom Steyer. Peters visited Steyer’s San Francisco mansion in February for a fundraising visit that netted hundreds of thousands of dollars for Reid’s super PAC.

The Land campaign said that the source of Peters’ funds will alienate him from Michigan voters.

"Michiganders cannot trust Congressman Peters because he has consistently voted for job-killing policies and tax increases, and sold out Michigan jobs to radical billionaires like Tom Steyer," Swift said in a statement.

Land and Peters are vying to replace retiring  Sen. Carl Levin (D., Mich.) in the Senate. While Levin won reelection by 30 points in 2008, Peters has not enjoyed anywhere close to that level of support in the heavy blue state. He leads Land by just 5.6 points, according to a Real Clear Politics poll average.