All posts by Darren Fishell

Darren Fishell

About Darren Fishell

Darren is a Portland-based reporter for the Bangor Daily News writing about the Maine economy and business. He's interested in putting economic data in context and finding the stories behind the numbers.

LePage campaign drops $100,000 on mailers, prepares TV ad

Marking the likely start of late campaign spending from the GOP, Republican Gov. Paul LePage’s campaign on Monday afternoon reported spending about $100,000 for mailings to voters and another $4,120 for production of a TV ad. The spending comes as ads paid for by the Republican Governors Association attacking Democrat Mike Michaud — to the tune of about $593,543 — hit the airwaves. It bodes […]

Cutler campaign cash dwindles as outside groups shovel $10 million to party candidates

Independent Eliot Cutler’s campaign entered mid-October with less cash on hand than Republican Paul LePage and Democrat Mike Michaud, who on top of their own war chests have political action committees that have spent about $10 million for or against them. The amount of outside spending has dwarfed activity by any of the campaigns and made clear the uphill battle Cutler faces in […]

Ad words: Welfare, jobs and togetherness take center stage in gubernatorial plugs

Last time we took a look at the language gubernatorial candidates are using to win your vote, there were about 10 ads from all the candidates. Well, a month later and two weeks out from the election, we’ve got another 10 to throw in the mix. It’s clear that candidates have not much altered their messages but amplified them.And you can expect them […]

Progressive Super PAC debuts with $106K to oppose LePage over weekend

A national Super PAC registered in Maine earlier this month has made its first expenditure, putting $106,000 of another PAC’s money into an online ad opposing Gov. Paul LePage. The group Progressive Kick IE Maine had the second-highest amount of independent expenditures in the gubernatorial race over the weekend, after the Maine Conservation Voters Action […]

Outside groups sling mud at Cain, Poliquin

Political action committees trying to sway second district voters have spent the vast majority of their cash on attack ads seeking to take down either Democratic Congressional hopeful Emily Cain or Republican Bruce Poliquin. That is, $9 of every $10 that PACs directed at Cain were attack ads; and about $9.60 of every $10 that PACs directed at Poliquin were negative. The picture of independent […]

Fact-checking the gubernatorial debate

In the first gubernatorial debate, featuring six topic-based questions that candidates had not received in advance, the facts and figures about Maine’s economy, government and people were flying fast — sometimes too fast. I’ll echo debate moderator and Portland Regional Chamber President Chris Hall’s caution that it’s difficult to juggle those kinds of numbers for questions not presented in advance. Below, I’ve added some […]

RGA has the biggest war chest, but faces fleet of Democratic PACs

Political action committees seeking to influence Maine elections had through September amassed about three-fourths of the entire amount raised during the last gubernatorial election year. As staff writer Mario Moretto reported today, that puts PAC spending on track to far outpace totals from the 2010 gubernatorial election. The latest numbers come from reports filed by a midnight deadline, detailing […]

RGA tops $2M in spending for LePage as Michaud also gets major outside media buy

Political parties and political action committees dumped a collective $770,000 into media buys, ads, and canvassing from Friday to Sunday, targeting specific races in the Maine House and Senate and making major media buys for negative ads against Republican Gov. Paul LePage and Democrat Mike Michaud. The vast majority of the spending over the weekend went to […]

LePage campaign spending surges in first half of September

Candidates for the Blaine House have taken in about $6.7 million and spent about $4.2 million of that, as of one week ago. As Election Day nears, the dynamics of that spending are changing. Each campaign filed its latest fundraising and expenditure reports by a midnight deadline Tuesday. I’ve pulled together some different views of those reports in two visual […]