PORTLAND — Maine independent gubernatorial candidate Eliot Cutler says he’s raised more than $430,000 so far for his 2014 campaign, while likely Democratic candidate Mike Michaud says he’s raised about $313,000.

In a semiannual report filed Monday with the Maine Ethics Commission, Cutler reports he received contributions from 632 individuals during the first six months of the year. He says 68 percent of his contributors are from Maine.

Michaud, a six-term representative for Maine’s 2nd Congressional District, reports he raised his money in the 17 days following his announcement of an exploratory committee for a possible challenge of Republican Gov. Paul LePage. Michaud says 1,200 individuals have contributed.

LePage had not filed his report as of Monday morning. The filing deadline for the report is midnight Monday.

Notable donors to Michaud’s campaign include Lewiston-Auburn businessman Jason Levesque, the president of Argo Marketing. Levesque, a Republican, challenged Michaud for his U.S. House seat in 2010.

Levesque also donated $200 to Cutler’s campaign and to the political action committee, Maine People Before Politics, which supports LePage.


“My hope was to encourage all of them to run a spirited, issues-based campaign, and I plan on making further contributions to some or all of them in the future,” Levesque said in an email to the Sun Journal. “I am sure that I will endorse one or the other as the election nears. But right now I am noncommittal.”

Also donating to Michaud’s campaign was former gubernatorial candidate Rosa Scarcelli and her husband Thomas Rhoads.

Both gave the maximum allowed, or $3,000 each. Scarcelli lost a Democratic primary to former state Senate President Libby Mitchell in 2010.

She, Rhoads and political adviser Dennis Bailey were at the heart of anonymous website dubbed the “Cutler Files” that attempted to discredit Cutler in his 2010 bid to become governor, when he came a close second to LePage.

Bailey donated $100 to Michaud’s campaign.

Leon Gorman, the recently retired chairman of L.L. Bean, and his wife, Lisa Gorman, also each donated the maximum $3,000 to Michaud’s campaign.


Party candidates who could face primary challenges are allowed to accept $1,500 from an individual donor for a primary campaign and another $1,500 for the general election campaign.

Cutler, as an independent, can only accept the single $1,500 donation because he would face no primary election. 

Cutler’s campaign made note of the discrepancy in a release Monday.

“This means that the party candidates, by law, can raise $2 for every $1 Cutler and other independents can raise,” the campaign said in an emailed statement, “something many see as a gross inequity in election laws that have been written by the parties for the benefit of the parties.”

Lizzy Reinholt, a spokeswoman for the Maine Democratic Party, said independent candidates did not incur primary expenses so the law was fair.

Reinholt also noted that, in a few short days, Michaud had raised more money from Mainers and less from out-of-state donors than Cutler.


“Mike raised more money from Maine people in 17 days than Eliot raised from Maine people in six months,” Reinholt said.

Notable Cutler donors include Auburn developer Thomas Platz, who gave the full $1,500.

While LePage’s campaign had not filed its report as of 2 p.m. Monday, its report from January shows LePage had raised more than $215,000. That information does not include any donations LePage picked up during a private fundraising event hosted by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush earlier in July.

LePage officially announced his re-election campaign during the event.

Brent Littlefield, a consultant for the LePage campaign, said the most current finance reports would be made available after the deadline. 

In a message to Maine reporters Monday, Littlefield wrote they expected to run a very competitive campaign and that, “All indications are there will be no moving trucks visiting the Blaine House in January of 2015.”


The Blaine House is the official governor’s residence in Maine.

“Unlike Mike Michaud, who has spent 30-plus years begging for campaign contributions, or Eliot Cutler, who has now spent five years running for governor, Paul LePage has actually been focused on his job, paying off the hospital welfare debt and lowering the unemployment rate,” Littlefield wrote.

The reports released Monday also show how much the candidates have spent so far on their campaigns. Michaud has spent just over $7,532 while Cutler has spent $73,719 and, based on his January report, LePage’s campaign has spent $38,962.


Maine gubernatorial campaign finance reports 

Click on name below to see most current report.

Gov. Paul LePage (Jan. 2014)

Eliot Cutler (July, 2014)

Mike Michaud (July, 2014)

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