LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Republican challenger John James raised $3.5 million in the last three months of 2019, topping Democratic incumbent Gary Peters by $1 million in Michigan’s U.S. Senate race.
It was the second straight quarterly fundraising victory for James, a businessman and combat veteran. He said he raised more than $8 million since launching his campaign in June. His campaign did not release how much money it had on hand.
Peters, a first-term senator, said he raised $2.5 million in the fourth quarter and more than $9.3 million over the year. His $8 million-plus in the bank is a record for a Michigan Senate candidate at this stage, entering an election year, according to his campaign.
“As this campaign continues to break records, it’s clear that Michiganders still want effective leaders who get things done,” Peters said in a statement highlighting his efforts to secure Great Lakes funding, to expand skills training and apprenticeship programs, and to work to lower prescription drug costs.
James, who lost to Sen. Debbie Stabenow as a first-time candidate in 2018, said his fundraising numbers show “excitement and enthusiasm” for his campaign.
“People are tired of the same do-nothing leadership in Congress, year after year,” said spokeswoman Abby Walls. “John’s biography proves that he’s the man to get the job done for Michigan.”
The reporting period closed Dec. 31. Campaign-finance reports detailing donations and expenditures are due Jan. 31.
Peters is one of two Democratic senators up for re-election in a state won by President Donald Trump. Outside of Alabama, Michigan may be the GOP’s best opportunity to target an incumbent, though Democrats traditionally have dominated Senate elections in the state.