Charles Fiedler lives on the West Coast. But with a law practice that also operates in Michigan, the attorney is well versed in Detroit’s politics.
In fact, he’s worked on some economic development projects and thinks Mayor Mike Duggan has the right idea with the city’s revitalization. “I’ve always been very supportive of what the mayor wants to do to help transition the city,” Fiedler says. “I think the mayor’s going in the right direction with the city, in the neighborhoods, the businesses, everything.”
Fiedler is the lone contributor from Washington state to Duggan’s candidate committee, which is the entity that collects campaign donations and pays for campaign expenses. But Fiedler’s $250 donation is one of the nearly 300 contributions that came from people outside of Michigan since Duggan formed the committee in 2012.
Since Duggan took office in 2014, his candidate committee has continued raising money, garnering about $1.6 million in contributions while he has been mayor. He raised about $3.0 million for his first campaign.
“As candidates for every type of office have to raise more and more money for their elections, they have to search all over for those donations, and more and more often people’s campaigns are not funded by their constituents,” says Craig Mauger, executive director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network. “They’re funded by groups that are located outside their district and have very specific interests in what they want to happen.”
WDET analyzed the out-of-state contributions to Duggan’s campaign. Here are the states, the number of contributors from them, and how much they gave: