Slotkin raises $460K in Democratic run for Congress

Melissa Nann Burke
The Detroit News

Democrat Elissa Slotkin of Holly raised more than $460,000 since beginning her campaign in July, her campaign said Thursday.

Democratic hopeful Elissa Slotkin talks with the media and supporters at an event in the Lansing Brewing Company on Monday, July 10, 2017 after she announced she would run for the seat currently held by US Rep Mike Bishop.

Slotkin, a former top Defense Department official, is seeking the Democratic nomination in Michigan’s 8th District and hoping to unseat U.S. Rep. Mike Bishop, R-Rochester. Her campaign first reported she had about $366,000 cash on hand but changed it Friday to $373,000.She had roughly $366,000 cash on hand as of Sept. 30, her campaign said.

“I’ve been heartened by the tremendous response to our campaign. It has affirmed my belief that there is a practical majority that doesn’t care about partisan politics and simply wants their government to work for them,” Slotkin said in a statement.

Bishop, who is in his second term, raised less than Slotkin for the third quarter, bringing in about $350,000, but he had more than $700,000 on hand as of Sept. 30, his campaign said.

“Mike Bishop has a record of working hard for constituents and has great momentum heading into 2018,” Bishop spokesman Stu Sandler said in a statement. 

The Michigan Republican Party on Thursday called Slotkin a “DC insider,” arguing she is still registered to vote there and that she’s taking the homestead tax exemption on her District of Columbia property, which is only supposed to apply to a homeowner’s principal residence.

“Democrats are running carpet bagging DC insiders across the nation just like they did with Jon Ossoff,” GOP spokeswoman Sarah Anderson said. “Voters want someone who knows the district, and that’s not happening with Elissa Slotkin.”

Slotkin’s campaign said she’s registered to vote in Holly Township in Oakland County, where she moved this past spring to her family’s farm after a 15-year career in national service including posts in the U.S. intelligence and defense communities in Washington and abroad during the administrations of Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

Slotkin, a former Central Intelligence Agency analyst who served three tours in Iraq, spent the last five years at the Pentagon, most recently as a top adviser to two secretaries of defense on security and defense issues related to the Middle East, Europe, Russia, Africa and Latin America.

“It’s pretty ironic that a career politician, who has taken millions in special interest money over a 20-year career in politics, is criticizing my record of national service,” Slotkin said.

“Mike Bishop represents everything wrong with Washington and, while he was serving his donors’ best interests, I was serving three tours in Iraq. When it comes to service and fighting for the people of Michigan, I’m happy to compare our records any day.”

6th District update

Democrat Matt Longjohn, the public health expert and physician hoping to unseat U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, raised nearly $211,700 in the third quarter, his campaign said Wednesday.

Longjohn of Portage announced his campaign in late July after leaving his position as the national health officer of the YMCA, where he ran community health programs.

In the last two cycles, Upton faced Democrat Paul Clements, besting him by 22 percentage points last fall. Clements last cycle raised record amounts of cash for a Democrat in the district -- more than $1.15 million.

Matt Longjohn, D-Portage

Former longtime Kellogg lobbyist George Franklin, a Democrat, joined the race for the 6th District nomination Thursday.

Franklin, an attorney, was at Kellogg for 25 years, serving as vice president for worldwide government relations. Previously, he was in private practice in Washington and worked as a legislative aide to former U.S. Rep. Frank Thompson, D-New Jersey.

He also worked for the U.S. House Special Subcommittee on Labor and was election counsel for the presidential campaign of President Jimmy Carter, according to his biography.

Franklin served for 11 years on the Board of Trustees of Western Michigan University and more recently joined the advisory board of the Levin Center at Wayne State University Law School.

Other Democrats in the primary race include David Benac, Rich Eichholz and Eponine Garrod.

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