Mayor Miro Weinberger, Infinite Culcleasure and Carina Driscoll
Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger set a new fundraising record during his successful reelection campaign this year, collecting $125,577 en route to a third term in office, according to campaign finance reports filed Tuesday. The effort surpassed the city record $118,000 Weinberger raised during his first run for mayor in 2012.
Weinberger, a Democrat, earned 48 percent of the vote on Election Day. Independent Carina Driscoll won 35 percent and Infinite Culcleasure, who also ran as an independent, tallied 16 percent.
Driscoll, who eschewed corporate campaign contributions, raised $58,400 and spent $52,800. Culcleasure pulled in more than $11,700 and spent $7,700.
The incumbent held a wide fundraising lead throughout the campaign and managed to drum up an additional $18,500 in the final two weeks. Weinberger spent about $107,800 of his war chest on a flurry of radio and newspaper ads, as well as for a telephone Town Meeting, ahead of March 6.
Up until the election, he continued to rake in checks from the Burlington business community, including $1,000 each from Burton CEO Donna Carpenter, Farrell Distributing CEO David Farrell, and landlord and developer Richard Bove, who recently purchased from the city a parking lot on which he intends to build a hotel.
Congressman Peter Welch's (D-Vt.) and Sen. Patrick Leahy's (D-Vt.) campaign committees contributed $1,000 apiece, as did Leahy's Green Mountain political action committee. The third member of Vermont's congressional delegation, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), backed Driscoll, his stepdaughter — and also contributed $1,000 to her campaign.
Weinberger also collected checks from state politicians, including former Barre mayor Thom Lauzon ($1,000), and state Rep. Tim Briglin (D-Thetford), who pitched in $250.
For her part, Driscoll attracted mostly smaller, local donations from those who have opposed Weinberger initiatives: Greg Epler Wood ($250), who supported Keep BT Local during the Burlington Telecom sale; Keep the Park Green proponent Carolyn Bates ($450), and Ben & Jerry's founder Ben Cohen, who has spoken against the basing of F-35 jets at Burlington International Airport ($1,020).
Driscoll raised more than $12,000 in the campaign's final days, while Culcleasure brought in more than $1,300.