The next peek at campaign finance, and 7 stories you need to read

It's all about the Benjamins, baby.  Creative Commons photo.

It’s all about the Benjamins, baby. Creative Commons photo.

Tomorrow is the filing deadline for the most recent campaign finance period for all state political candidates, from governor all the way down to county commissioners and district attorneys.

The deadline marks 42 days before the general election on Nov. 4, and the reports will detail the campaign fundraising and spending between July 15 and Sept. 16. Most attention will be paid, obviously, to the three Blaine House candidates, whose races will cost much, much more than the others.

Last week, Eliot Cutler attempted to get a jump on the news cycle by releasing a sketch of his fundraising total for the two-month period: About $500,000 (including a $100,000 loan from Cutler himself). A half a million dollars is clearly nothing to sneeze at, but tomorrow we’ll get additional details such as available cash and total expenditures that will put Cutler’s campaign, and the others, in context.

In the last reporting period (read the story here), Democratic candidate and U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud was leading the pack in fundraising from individuals  with $267,000, followed by Cutler with $176,000 and incumbent Republican Gov. Paul LePage with $158,000. But Cutler led total fundraising, thanks to a $588,000 cash infusion from his own private coffers.

Check out the great visual breakdown of the candidates’ financial reports by our resident campaign finance guru, Darren “Charts” Fishell, for more info.

As we get closer to election day, and the candidates spend more and more on airtime, mailers and piles of take-out pizza to feed hungry volunteers, the numbers will climb and climb — to say nothing of the millions being spent by independent groups.

Campaigns often wait until the last possible minute to file their reports. They’ve got until midnight tomorrow to submit their paperwork to the Maine Ethics Commission. We’ll have a roundup for you not long after.

In the meantime, here’s 7 stories from last week to keep you busy:

Mario Moretto

About Mario Moretto

Mario Moretto has been a Maine journalist, in print and online publications, since 2009. He joined the Bangor Daily News in 2012, first as a general assignment reporter in his native Hancock County and, now, in the State House. Mario left the BDN in 2015.