The Muskegon-based 91st District promises to be another high-dollar affair and the top Republican in the Downriver-based 23rd looks to make the Democrats work for that potential pickup.
The Democrats do appear to have a fundraising edge in the Mt. Pleasant based 99th and the Northwestern Michigan-based 101st, but Republicans can boast a notable fundraising edge for the competitive primaries featuring their incumbents in Oakland County, Eaton County and Kalamazoo County
In June, MIRS re-racked the rankings for the 15 seats most likely to flip into Democratic hands. In order of probability here are what the latest campaign finance numbers show about each of those races:
1. 23rd District
Despite the seat being long-anticipated to flip, no candidate in this field -- Democrat or Republican -- swept the fundraising field. With the exception of Democratic candidate Mike TAYLOR, candidates in this field reported a relatively close range of cumulative contributions, between $49,182.66 and $56,697.80.
Dueling Trenton city councilmen, Republican Bob HOWEY and Democrat Steven RZEPPA raised nearly $57,000 and just over $51,000, respectively. Both candidates closed out their books with dollars in the low $30,000s on hand, but Howey has a little less than four times the debt of Rzeppa.
2. 62nd District
Republicans have fiercely defended the chances of Rep. John BIZON (R-Battle Creek) who faces a challenge from Democratic Calhoun County Commissioner Jim HAADSMA. The numbers show that Bizon outraised Haadsma overall with $94,391.14 in the bank, versus Haadsma's $54,526.20. But for the period-- covering Jan. 1 to July 17 -- the two are neck-and-neck, raising about $40,000 each.
3. 108th District
Eyed by Democrats for a potential pick-up with a strong candidate in Dickinson County Sheriff Scott CELELLO, Republican Matthew LaFAVE performed well in the district, raising $27,056 and reporting $13,217 cash on hand. Republican Darryl SHANN reported $16,549 with a little more cash on hand, $4,827. Tea Party-favored Alan ARCAND didn't have his report online by the end of the day.
4. 91st District
Former Rep. Collene LAMONTE brought in $83,080 for the reporting period, while Rep. Holly HUGHES raised $29,200. Democrats say the differential shows Lamonte's favor in the district. Lamonte overall had more in-district contributors than Hughes, but Lamonte also cashed in on more out-of-state donors, including Washington, D.C. -based EMILY's List.
Though Hughes closed out the books at $112,369, that cash on hand advantage is weakened by $357,639 in debt. Lamonte has $99,728 cash on hand and a clean balance sheet.
5. 24th District
Term-limited Rep. Anthony FORLINI (R-Harrison Twp.) has easily held the seat for the last for years, but Democrats have had confidence in their candidate Dana CAMPHOUS-PETERSON who raised $58,097 and closed out books with $26,628 still in the bank.
The Republicans' preferred candidate, Steve MARINO -- who in his past race for Macomb County Commissioner was unafraid to dip into his own personal coffers - raised $69,270, carrying $35,000 in debt and reporting just over $34,000 in cash on hand.
6. 99th District
Another seat on Democrats' wish list is the seat currently held by Speaker Kevin COTTER (R-Mt. Pleasant). Cotter defeated Democratic candidate Bryan MIELKE in 2014, but Meilke posted a strong fundraising period with $69,348 and $82,048 cash on hand. Republican Roger HAUCK reported $24,447 with $8,512 cash on hand. Republican Robin STRESSMAN did not file.
7. 30th District
Republican candidate Dana FARRINGTON, wife of the seat's current Rep. Jeff FARRINGTON (R-Utica), outraised both potential Democratic opponents with $58,629 and $39,203.20 still in the bank heading into the general. Democrats Michael NOTTE and John SPICA raised $34,564 and $3,130, respectively. Spice spent about half, leaving him with $1,663.34 in cash on hand and Notte reported $23,740.
8. 101st District
Favored Republican candidate Curt VanderWALL raised $37,607, which was $20,000 short of the fundraising reported by former one-term state representative Dan SCRIPPS, running as a Democrat. VanderWall has walked away with most of the big endorsements in hand, but the question remains whether Scripps can tap into the 7,000-plus voters in the district who cast a vote for Sanders in the primary. From the looks of his contribution sheets, Scripps has found more than just a few.
Republican Mark WALTER reporter a fundraising total of $8,138, with $7,550 in debt and $1,273 cash on hand.
9. 106th District
If dollars were votes, Democrat Erin KIELISZEWSKI would have the primary against Democrat Robert KENNEDY. Kennedy has won the primary in this district before, but Kennedy reported $14,080 in contributions and $15,957 in debt. Kieliszewski reported $52,335 and $60 in debt.
Republican Sue ALLOR outraised primary opponent Jackie KRAWCZAK by two-to-one. Allor raised $66,353 for the period, while Krawczak reported $30,009. This primary was expected to be competitive early on, with a crop of strong candidates. A third Republican in field, David CHANDLER, raised just $795 while Jesse OSMER's report was not available.
10. 61st District
Vulnerable incumbent Rep. Brandt IDEN (R-Kalamazoo) raised a solid nest egg of $93,796.58. With a burn rate of 20 percent, closed out the period with $76,350 cash on hand. His Democratic opponent John FISHER has raised $25,029.14 so far and reported $14,709 cash on hand.
11. 71st District
While Rep. Tom BARRETT (R-Potterville) certainly swept the Lansing circuit for his $109,078 haul, his contribution sheets also show substantial contribution from voters in the 71st district. Democratic challenger and former representative Theresa ABED has raised $38,249 this cycle and reported $31,487 cash on hand. Barrett reported $82,429.68 cash on hand and $4,000 of debt.
12. 104th District
Democrats and Republicans alike acknowledge incumbent Rep. Larry INMAN (R-Williamsburg) could be in trouble if Betsy COFFIA learned from her last run in 2014 and runs a competitive campaign. Coffia raised $23,426 and reported $12,551 in cash on hand.
However, Inman reported raising $60,675 this period, with $44,692.00 cash on hand.
Much of the political cavalry came into play, including at least $9,000 from various members of the DeVos family. Rep. Tom LEONARD's (R-DeWitt) leadership fund also bolstered Inman's campaign with a handful of $500 contributions.
Inman's Republican competitor in the primary Jason GILLMAN reported raising $12,695 this period with $2,079 cash on hand and $11,726 in debt.
13. 56th District
Rep. Jason SHEPPARD (R-Lambertville) faces a competitive challenge from Democratic candidate Tom REDMOND. Redmond, a Monroe County sheriff who ran and lost for the seat in 2014, reported raising $16,930 this period and $8,347.38 cash on hand.
Sheppard raised $43,190 -- brining his fundraising total to $43,190 -- and closed out books with nearly seven times Redmond's cash on hand with $59,036.
14. 41st District
Rep. Martin HOWRYLAK (R-Troy) raised $14,480 this period but reported $31,865.81 in cash on hand. Howrylak's cash on hand advantage is tempered by $37,497 in debt. Democratic candidate Cyndi POLTONEN raised $3,850.00 and spent less than $800, leaving her with $3,089 cash on hand. The suburban Oakland County district was considered a wildcard to flip, because of the "Trump effect" on suburban voters.
15. 39th District
Again, for this district, it all comes down to how much weight the top of the ticket will carry. Rep. Klint KESTO (R-Walled Lake) showed strong fundraising at $71,935 and $81,964 cash on hand. Democratic challenger Michael STACK performed fairly well for a first-timer candidate, raising $21,476 and reporting $17,110 cash on hand.
Honorable Mention: 85th District
In a crowded field to replace Rep. Ben GLARDON (R-Owosso) only one candidate broke $10,000 in fundraising. Republican Ben FREDERICK raised $24,540 for a total of $99,904. Republican Hartmann AUE has raised a total of $26,275 but raised $6,780 this period.
A crowded Democratic field gave Democrats hope of taking the seat, but fundraising numbers make that hope look strained. Democrat David KARHOFF was the strongest fundraiser with $7,670 this period. Fellow Democratic contenders John HORVATH and Joyce SUPRENANT, raised $5,649 and $1,039, respectively.
Republican challenger Joe BELLINO appears to be making strong moves toward incumbent Rep. Bill LAVOY's (D-Monroe) 17th district seat, but it's hard to say as LaVoy's numbers aren't available.
In a cycle poised to favor Democrats, Republicans have quietly eyed two seats currently held by Democrats, including LaVoy's. Bellino raised $20,970 this period and reported $3,911.96 cash on hand.
Though Republicans have tried to make a long-shot play for Rep. Tom COCHRAN's (D-Mason) seat in the 67th, the race remains fairly uneventful. Cochran opted not to file and Republican Leon CLARK raised just $4,575 but spent a third of it, leaving him with $1,267.43 cash on hand.