As the election season heats up in New Bedford, there is an important metric to watch: fundraising. Mayor Mitchell is the king of cash in this cycle so far.

As I have previously written, Mayor Jon Mitchell has built a tremendous fundraising operation since he first ran for office in 2011. He has raised close to $700,000 from 3,481 separate contributions, as of the last report. He has nearly $200,000 in cash on hand.

But where does all this financial support come from?

The largest pool of individual contributions to the Mitchell campaign lists their addresses as the city of New Bedford. There are 1,465 individual contributions from the city that has elected the mayor for a total of $239,575 since 2011.

Contrary to some folks claims that it is out-of-towners who control the politics of New Bedford, it is clear that the current mayor draws his largest source of support from his own city. Some of the donors are business owners who list their business address on their disclosure form, but they are stakeholders in the city and they have an interest in seeing the city prosper.

Lots of stories about political fundraising have a hint of wrongdoing in them. In this case, I have seen nothing the indicates the slightest amount of wrongdoing by the mayor or his campaign.

Mayor Mitchell is originally from neighboring Dartmouth, so that is obviously going to be a strong base of support for him. He has received 706 contributions from there for a total of $153,008.

Fairhaven donations total 141 for a combined $19,375. Mattapoisett donations total 108 for a combined $22,310, while 94 donations for a total of $25,577 have come from Marion.

Mayor Jon Mitchell has an impressive group of individuals in New Bedford and the region who have the financial horsepower to keep him in the corner office this year.

Chris McCarthy is the host of The Chris McCarthy Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @Chris_topher_Mc. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author. 

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