Politics

President Obama’s Fundraising Challenges

Mon., Apr. 23, 2012 8:38 AM EDT
by Terry Shropshire

President Obama is struggling to raise the amount of cash it will take to defeat Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in the 2012 general elections.

The Obama war room is experiencing huge drop-offs in campaign donations in comparison to the 2008 presidential campaign and is reportedly leaning heavily on “grass-roots supporters” which make up more than half of his campaign donors.

“They clearly are feeling the pressure,” said one major Obama fund-raiser, who spoke to the media on the condition of anonymity. “They’re behind where they expected to be. You have to factor in $500 million-plus in Republican super PAC money.”

With Hollywood and Wall Street now coming through as they did four years ago, the president has shifted gears. The national committee’s fund-raising from the technology industry, entrepreneurs, Wall Street and the entertainment industry have all risen sharply compared with 2008, even as the Obama campaign’s performance in those areas has tailed off, according to media reports. Obama has had more than 100 campaign and fundraising stops, reportedly far much more than his predecessor at this time during his 2004 reelection campaign.

The big difference? There is no primary to excite and galvanize Obama’s base as there was when Obama went toe-to-toe with John Edwards and especially Hillary Rodham Clinton. Additionally, the economy is still struggling to rebound, and four years of political battles with Wall Street and other industries taking their toll. Thus far,  Obama’s campaign raised about $196 million through March, compared with $235 million at the same point in 2008.

However, that has been offset by a highly successful joint fund-raising program with the national committee, which raised about $150 million, twice as much as in 2008.

— terry shropshire

Tags: , ,