Voter ID groups release first fundraising numbers

Groups supporting and opposing a constitutional amendment to require people to show photo identification at the polls have made a modest amount of money since they launched their ballot campaigns.

Leading the pack is ProtectMyVote.com, a ballot fund started by Minnesota Majority, a group that supports the constitutional amendment. So far, the group has raised about $75,000 and spent about $56,000 of it on advertising, polling and printing among other things.

The group ended the period with about $19,000 cash-on-hand.

ProtectMyVote.com’s donations come from an array of regular conservative donors, and some are so small that they weren’t reported.

But by far the largest contribution is $50,000 from Joan Cummins, the wife of Bob Cummins, one of Minnesota’s most generous Republican donors and the founder of the Freedom Club, a group that played an instrumental role in helping the GOP win control of the Legislature in 2010.

Voter ID for MN, another group supporting the amendment has raised $20,000 and spent about $13,000 of it on advertising.

Our Vote Our Future, which opposes the amendment, has raised more than $50,000 in contributions, with roughly $45,000 coming in the form of in-kind contributions from the Alliance for a Better Minnesota, TakeAction Minnesota, and other organizations interested in defeating the amendment.

The group has spent roughly $46,000.

AARP Minnesota has also set up the MN Ballot Question Fund to defeat the amendment. The fund is relatively new and raised $17,500 this reporting period. That’s in addition to the $17,500 it had already collected at the start of the year.

All the money came from a single entity: AARP.

The Minnesota League of Women Voters’ Vote No on Voter ID fund has raised roughly $12,800 to defeat the amendment, with about $10,800 coming in the form of in-kind contributions of League staff.

Minnesota Votes for America’s Future, formally known as Our Vote Our Future, a fund initially set up by community organizing group TakeAction Minnesota, a group supporting Our Vote Our Future, has raised $8,819 so far. Roughly $7,700 came in the form staff time from employees of America Votes.

Correction: An earlier version of this story indicated that Minnesota Votes for America’s Future was a ballot fund set up by TakeAction Minnesota. It is not. Rather, the group is a partner of TakeAction Minnesota’s Our Vote Our Future. In addition, an earlier version of this story did not reference Our Vote Our Future’s fundraising report because it was not yet posted on the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board’s website.

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