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The League of Women Voters is Making it Easier for You to Follow the Money

Knowing the source of candidate’s campaign funding is important.

To the Editor:

League of Women Voters of Alameda provide information about campaign fundingGetting ready to cast an informed ballot is no easy task. You have to check candidates’ experience, sort through their policy positions and see who is endorsing them. And you have to wade through an avalanche of mailers and ads in the process.

Understanding where candidates are getting their funding is part of this process. Campaign contributions are, in essence, a very concrete form of endorsement and they tell us a lot about who is most interested in seeing the candidate elected. Fortunately, the State of California requires candidates to report all contributions over $100 periodically prior to and after the election. Unfortunately, the reporting forms are pretty dense and take a lot of time to sift through.

The League of Women Voters Alameda (LWVA) chapter is making this task easier for Alameda voters by translating the information into easy-to-understand graphs and tables. After each filing deadline, we post them on the Alameda Campaign Funding page on our website. There, you’ll find bar graphs that break down contributions to each candidate for Mayor, City Council, and School Board by where the money comes from, whether it comes from individuals or groups, and whether it comes in small or large amounts. Other tables detail the sources of all contributions over $1,000 as well as loans to the candidates.

Independent Expenditures for Mayor*
Independent Expenditure CommitteeCitySupportOppose
Marilyn Ezzy-Ashcraft
Alameda Firefighers PACAlameda$4,993$0
Barack Obama Shaw
Trish Spencer
A Better AlamedaAlameda$5,478$0
*Amounts reported by General Purpose Committees spent independently supporting (in black) or opposing (in red) a candidate as of Oct. 22, 2022. These are not direct contributions to candidates.


Independent Expenditures for City Council*
General Purpose CommitteeCitySupportOppose
Paul Beusterien
A Better AlamedaAlameda$5,478$0
Tony Daysog
A Better AlamedaAlameda$5,478$0
Hannah Groce
Alameda Firefighters Union PACAlameda$1,474$0
Tracy Jensen
Alameda Firefighters Union PACAlameda$1,474$0
Jim Oddie
Alameda Firefighters Union PACAlameda$1,474$0
*Amounts reported by General Purpose Committees spent independently supporting (in black) or opposing (in red) a candidate as of Oct. 22, 2022. These are not direct contributions to candidates.

We also detail where Independent Expenditure Committees are getting their funds and how they are spending them to support or oppose candidates. Some of those funds are contributed directly to candidates; others are used to promote candidates independent of the candidates’ campaigns through mailers, ads and phone banks. Since a law went into effect at the beginning of last year establishing a contribution limit of $4,900 to any candidate, we’re seeing more independent expenditure activity.

Information on the website has been updated to reflect the last pre-election filing on October 27. We hope you’ll take time to look at it and incorporate it into your decision-making. Democracy is messy and difficult, but in the end it’s the informed voter that makes it work well.

Anne McKereghan
President, League of Women Voters Alameda

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