Democrats Surpass Republicans in Fund-Raising
The Democratic presidential candidates continued to raise significantly more money during the last three months than their Republican counterparts, according to official and unofficial third-quarter fund-raising tallies that were released yesterday.
Senator Barack Obama, the Illinois Democrat, raised at least $20 million over the summer, more than $19 million of which could be spent on the primary — showing that he continued to be a formidable fund-raiser. It was unclear whether he still led in fund-raising, as he did this spring, because Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton did not release her tally. (Her aides had said that they expected to raise a similar amount.) John Edwards raised $7 million, and Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico raised $5.2 million.
By comparison, Mitt Romney, who has been one of the strongest Republican fund-raisers this election, raised only about half of what Mr. Obama raised this summer, according to a senior adviser who was granted anonymity to discuss the campaign’s finances. The adviser said that Mr. Romney brought in about $10 million from donors, and that he used more than $6 million of his own money for his campaign.
Rudolph W. Giuliani, who replaced his chief fund-raiser at the end of the quarter, did not release a tally, but said over the weekend that he thought he would “do as well as the other Republicans — maybe we will do better than some.” Fred D. Thompson raised at least $8 million in his first quarter as a candidate, according to people involved with the campaign — less than the other leading candidates raised early in their campaigns.
And Senator John McCain of Arizona raised more than $5 million, according to a Republican familiar with the campaign’s finances.
Strategists in both parties said that the fund-raising imbalance showed that Democrats, and their donors, are more energized this year as they battle to reclaim the White House after nearly eight years of Republican rule. And they said President Bush’s sagging popularity is hurting the Republicans who are vying to replace him.
“This just shows the difficult political climate that Republicans are facing,” said Scott Reed, a Republican strategist. “The bright side is that next spring, the Republicans will have plenty of money to give the candidate who goes up against Hillary Clinton.”
The imbalance is not lost on the candidates themselves. Mr. Giuliani said over the weekend that the ability of Democrats to raise money this year has been “phenomenal.”
All of the campaigns who gave their tallies reported drop-offs in contributions in the third-quarter, which is considered a difficult time to raise money as many well-heeled donors get out of their offices and off the fund-raising circuit to go on vacations and to their summer houses. And the campaigns often have already tapped their donors to the legal limit in contributions. But the Democrats still appeared to weather the summer months better than the Republicans.
Mr. Obama’s take brings his total for the year to nearly $80 million. He attracted 93,000 new contributors to his campaign, aides said, which raised the total number of donors to 352,000. Mr. Obama has focused on building a big base of small donors whom he can repeatedly tap into for new money.
But the fact that it was his smallest take of the year led to at least a whiff of worry for some supporters, which his campaign manager, David Plouffe sought to tamp down yesterday. “Many in Washington have spent the last weeks declaring the outcome of this race to be preordained, and the primary process a mere formality,” Mr. Plouffe said in a statement. “Yet, in this quarter alone, 93,000 more Americans joined our campaign, because they desire real change and believe Barack Obama is the one candidate who can deliver it.”
The Edwards campaign said that with the $7 million it raised over the summer, it has $12 million in cash on hand — which could result in $22 million once it received the public matching funds that it has applied for. The matching funds will give the campaign a needed infusion of cash, but will limit how it can be spent.
Edwards campaign officials said that the matching funds would not only help them in their quest for the nomination but would help distinguish Mr. Edwards from other Democratic candidates, particularly Mrs. Clinton, who are opting out of the public matching funds program, which limits spending. They portrayed it as a continuation of Mr. Edwards’ criticisms of Mrs. Clinton for accepting donations from political action committees and lobbyists — donations he does not accept.
“The American people will have a choice, a sharp distinction between us and Hillary Clinton,” Joe Trippi, a senior Edwards campaign adviser, said in a conference call with reporters.
The $8 million that Mr. Thompson reportedly raised — campaign officials said they were still counting checks — suggested that there was no huge pool of donors who were unmoved by the rest of the Republican field and were eagerly awaiting his entrance into the race. But his supporters said that many of his donors — there were more than 70,000 of them — did not give the maximum allowed, meaning that they could be tapped for more donations.
(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. I.U. has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is I.U endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)
The Nazis, Fascists and Communists were political parties before they became enemies of liberty and mass murderers.