The Obama campaign says their record-setting $86 million haul shows that Democrats are ready to roll after a demoralizing 2010.
According to the campaign, some 260,000 donors for the quarter had never contributed money to President Obama before, suggesting that there was still room to grow the base. The average donation to either the campaign or to the Democratic National Committee, both of whose totals were included in the $86 million, was just $88. In addition, 98% of donations to the campaign were under $250.“This should end any chatter about our grasroots base,” campaign manager Jim Messina told reporters on Wednesday. “Our people are back and energized and there’s a new generation of supporters who have joined our organization.”
According to Messina, the Obama campaign will release more details on their fundraising haul on Friday, including a list of “bundlers” — big-time fundraisers who collect donations then deliver them en masse to the campaign. As was the case in 2008, the Obama campaign also does not take money PACs and lobbyists. Both Messina and DNC communications director Brad Woodhouse called on Republicans to release similar lists on Wednesday, noting that President Bush revealed his own top donors in 2004, which he labeled “Rangers” and “Pioneers” depending on their totals. None of the candidates have done so yet.
Despite the impressive haul, the campaign is downplaying expectations for the 3rd quarter, saying they expect a dip in fundraising over the summer months similar to their dropoff in the 2008 Democratic primary.