With the figures in for August, the Obama campaign’s fundraising has surpassed Romney’s for the first time since April. In a joint effort between the campaign and the Democratic Party, Obama gained more than $114 million, where the Romney campaign and the Republican National Committee raised $111.6 million.
This is the first time Obama has received more than $100 million in a month, while Romney’s figures have surpassed that level for each of the past three months. A more telling fact, however, is that Romney’s total has remained relatively stagnant but Obama’s is growing. This is true in spite of the fact that August was the month of the Republican National Convention, with heavy catering to the Super PACs by the GOP. Romney’s total numbers for the month didn’t take off; his figures were just $10 million more than July’s. Obama’s numbers jumped. His August total was a full $39 million more than in July.
A statement released by Obama’s campaign manager, Jim Messina, said, “The key to fighting back against the special interests writing limitless checks to support Mitt Romney is growing our donor base, and we did, substantially, in the month of August.” Furthermore, the contributions were “from more than 1.1 million Americans donating an average of $58 — more than 317,000 who had never contributed to the campaign before.” The Romney campaign didn’t release the total number of contributions, saying only that there were over 820,000 donations that were $250 or less.
September will be a key month, financially, with the expectation that the Democratic National Convention gave a significant monetary boost to the President’s campaign. An early indicator, as reported in the Huffington Post, is the fact that the Democratic goal was to get 600,000 grassroots donations during convention week. By midnight Friday, the campaign had received 700,000 online donations. Multiply that by the average of $58 and it wouldn’t be unreasonable to expect that $40 million was raised in that week alone.
August’s figures seem to show that the once unthinkable is doable, which is: grassroots support trumping the Super PACs.