Tudor Dixon is almost entirely relying on the influence and resources of special interests to sell her wrong-for-Michigan agenda. To date, none have answered the call quite like the DeVos family. According to reporting from CNBC, they are expected to spend upwards of “30 million” to boost Dixon’s campaign.
Already, the “kingmakers in Michigan politics” have “contributed more than $4 million to outside groups,” a sizable chunk of which went to the PAC running the majority of the airwave interference propping up Dixon’s campaign.
Besty DeVos and her entire family are taking such lengths because installing a candidate like Dixon is critical to their crusade to rewrite Michigan’s constitution and siphon billions away from public education, severely harming working families and future workforce generations in the process.
But the DeVoses aren’t alone. After they publicly lined up behind her, PACs supporting Dixon funded by other “deep-pocketed donors” were able to spend “a combined $2.18 million” in her favor to drag her through the bitter primary.
Since the latest financial report, one PAC put five figures on the radio, another threw in $100,000, a different one “reserved $103,000 worth of airtime,” Susan B. Anthony List announced they would be parachuting in six figures.
CNBC: Michigan Governor’s Race Could Cost $100 Million as Billionaire Devos Family Spends Millions to Oust Gov. Gretchen Whitmer
By Brian Schwartz
The wealthy DeVos family is pouring millions of dollars into its long established political network to help Republican candidate Tudor Dixon overtake Michigan Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in what could be one of the most expensive races in the 2022 midterm elections.
State records show that since the beginning of May, DeVos family members contributed more than $4 million to outside groups that have either supported Dixon or blasted Whitmer. That massive total includes $1 million by DeVos family members toward Michigan Families United, a pro-Dixon super PAC that spent more than $2.5 million on broadcast and cable ads in the primary, according to data from AdImpact.
The DeVos family has a net worth of at least $2 billion, according to Forbes, and has worked to influence Michigan politics for decades. […]
Maeve Coyle, a spokeswoman for Whitmer’s campaign, ripped Dixon’s alliance with the DeVos family in a statement to CNBC.
“Tudor Dixon has been propped up by special interests and millions from the DeVos family because she supports their dangerous agenda to dismantle public education and divert hundreds of millions of dollars in funding away from Michigan public schools,” Coyle said. She added that Whitmer has led the state in “making historic investments in K-12 education, closing the school funding gap, and putting 170,000 Michiganders on a path to tuition-free higher education and skills training – without raising any taxes.”
Representatives for Betsy and Dick DeVos, Dixon, the Michigan Freedom Fund and the Michigan Freedom Network did not return requests for comment. […]
The Michigan Freedom Network, a political action committee affiliated with the nonprofit, raised more than $75,000 in June alone from members of the DeVos family. […]
Michigan political strategists say the DeVos family efforts in the primary are just the beginning and their political war chest could give Dixon a needed boost in the general election campaign this fall to make the race close enough for her to possibly pull off an upset, which could impact races up and down the ballot within the state.
“They are just warming up,” Mark Brewer, a state Democratic strategist and former chair of the Michigan Democratic Party, told CNBC in an interview. Brewer expects the DeVos family to spend between $10 million and $30 million backing Dixon.
The race is shaping up to be one of the most expensive midterm fights yet. […]
Jeff Timmer, former executive director of the Michigan Republican Party, says the general election for governor could cost between $75 million and $100 million now that the DeVos’ are throwing all their support behind Dixon. “Their money, and the others they can corral, has the potential to keep the Dixon-Whitmer race close that (a) Dixon could pull an upset and (b) prevent the collapse of the GOP down ballot,” he said. […]
For Dixon, the timing of the DeVos endorsement was critical, as her campaign went into primary day with just over $537,000 on hand, a paltry sum compared with Whitmer’s more than $14 million war chest. […]
For years, the DeVos family has been advocating for education policies that critics say would pull tax dollars away from public schools and put more funds toward private school education. […]
Betsy DeVos advocated with administration officials as Trump’s Education secretary for massive cuts in federal education spending but was repeatedly rebuffed by Congress. The Florida Phoenix reported that DeVos told conservative activists last month she thinks the Department of Education “should not exist.”
Dixon’s Education Savings Account proposal listed on her campaign website matches what DeVos and the Trump administration proposed while in power. The ESAs would be created for parents to use to pay for education costs, including private schooling, with funds dedicated to public education.
DeVos-backed education groups that advocate for similar school choice positions have been blasting Whitmer for months. Since mid-May, Facebook’s ad archive says the Great Lakes Education Project, a political action committee funded largely by the DeVos’, has spent more than $30,000 on digital ads, with some taking aim at Whitmer. The Great Lakes Education Project did not return requests for comment. […]
State records shows that DeVos family members contributed $100,000 to the PAC in June, including a $25,000 donation directly from Betsy DeVos.