Obama 2012 Fundraising Lags Behind Campaign’s Projections

Politics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 13, 2011   |   10:30AM   |   Washington, DC

President Barack Obama will likely have more than enough money to compete for another four years in the White House, but his early numbers are lagging behind the projections his campaign made recently.

Obama campaign officials revealed last week they hoped for raising $60 million for the second quarter from 450,000 donors across the country who want to see the pro-abortion president get another four years to force Americans to pay for abortions and fund pro-abortion groups. Still, that $60 million goal is the same amount he raised in the second quarter of 2007 — so the expectations coming into the quarter returns were no higher than they were when the political cycle favored Democrats.

Also, to match the $750 million Obama raised in 2008, he would have to bring in $100 million per quarter for this and seven more quarters leading up to the election. He would have to raise even more if he wanted to meet the $1 billion dollar mark his campaign initially set.

The campaign reported today that Obama brought in $86 million in donations — which would seem to be above the mark the campaign set but below the amount needed to keep pace with his 2008 numbers or the $1 billion wish list. But, Jim Geraghty of National Review makes the case that the fundraising was more subpar than that.

“Today the number is $86 million, an impressive sum by any measure. But it’s worth remembering, as Nathan Wurtzel notes, Obama’s total includes fundraising he did for the Democratic National Committee, as opposed to GOP candidates’ totals, which are amounts raised solely for their campaign,” he explained. “To offer a more accurate comparison, you would have to toss in the totals for the RNC, which raised $6 million in April and $6 million in May. The RNC’s June total is not yet known.”

“Is Obama ahead in fundraising? Yes, and probably by quite a bit. But the comparison is not Obama and the DNC’s $86 million against Romney’s $18.3 million. The comparison is Obama and the DNC’s $86 million against Romney [or your preferred candidate] + $12 million for the RNC in April and May + the RNC’s June total,” he said.

“Will Obama still be comfortably ahead? Of course. And he probably should be, considering how he’s an incumbent president who has hit the fundraising trail with a fast and furious pace,” Geraghty continues. “But again, to match his $750 million from the 2008 cycle, Obama would need to average $107 million for seven quarters. Obviously, it is possible that Obama can make up ground in the next few quarters. But to hit that hyped $1 billion number, Obama would need to raise a bit more than $142 million per quarter. As impressive as the $86 million figure is, it’s below those markers.”

In fact, as Geraghty notes, Obama’s fundraising just for his campaign was merely $47 million of the $86 million total — just two and a half times what Romney raised and not much more than the combined total of all of the Republican candidates.

Obama will certainly have enough money to campaign and advertise extensively and to pay for a significant campaign apparatus that will target every one of the competitive states. But the fact that his numbers are lower than the lofty expectations of a $1 billion campaign and below the standard he set in 2008 are an indication of some love loss with the American public and a sign that the 2012 re-election campaign will be more competitive than the 2008 election — a campaign where Republican John McCain had a lead even in the late stages of the campaign, before the economy nosedived.