McCann Proposes Rolling Back State Campaign Contribution Limits

Jun 24, 2019

State Senate Sean McCann at a news conference Monday announcing new legislation to lower limits on campaign contributions.
Credit Gordon Evans / WMUK

A state Senator from Kalamazoo County wants to roll back the limits on what individual donors can give to state campaigns. State Senator Sean McCann’s bill would cut contribution limits in half.

In 2013 the state Legislature approved an increase in how much individual donors could give to candidate campaigns and political action committees. McCann says it’s not what voters want.

“I’ve knocked on thousands of constituent doors, and I have yet to hear a voter ask for more money in politics.”

McCann says voters would rather see lawmakers focus on clean water, better schools and improving Michigan’s roads. He says voters in Michigan approved two ballot proposals last year to improve elections, one to put an independent commission in charge of drawing district lines for Congress and the state Legislature. The other makes it easier to register to vote and cast an absentee ballot. McCann says campaign finance is another important part of election reform.

Poster at Monday morning's news conference at state Senator Sean McCann's district office
Credit Gordon Evans / WMUK

“These are the legs of the stool that I see, fair districts, money and access to the ballot, and if we can build these three legs strong then we can have a good Democracy."

McCann says he plans to formally introduce his legislation this week. The Kalamazoo Democrat says he plans to work on more campaign finance reforms.

The Michigan Campaign Finance Network found that doubling contribution limits added $6.3-million to campaign spending in 2014. McCann’s office says its analysis shows the number for 2018 was closer to $10-million.