PORTLAND, Maine _ A candidate in Portland's three-way mayoral race is calling out one of his opponents for accepting thousands of dollars from what he describes as "luxury development firms" at a time when residents are struggling to find affordable housing.
Tom MacMillan says Ethan Strimling has far outstripped both his and incumbent Michael Brennan's fundraising, in large part by accepting donations from wealthy development firms.
"It's not just a couple donations," says MacMillan. "He's raised over 30 thousand dollars from people who have a direct financial stake in making sure we have luxury housing in Portland. And I think that's reprehensible."
MacMillan says voters should be concerned over some of Strimling's campaign donors which include several property companies and developers with high dollar projects currently underway- since development and affordable housing are key issues facing the city now.
Incumbent Mike Brennan says that MacMillan has a point; he says there are campaign finance laws for a reason. Brennan says that he himself has rejected development money that he felt could compromise his position.
Strimling responded with a statement saying he is proud of the "broad coalition of support" on his campaign, and that his 431 donors include "teachers, firefighters, labor leaders, business leaders, immigrants and residents from all over Portland." He also points out that most of his contributions across the board are for $100 or less.