The Obama fundraising machine continues to roll on, as the campaign announced today that it raised $51 million in July. This nearly doubles Republican John McCain’s haul of $27 million. The campaign also reported 65,000 new donors for the month. Over 2 million people have now given to the Obama campaign.
Obama’s campaign manager David Plouffe said, “The 65,000 new donors to the Obama campaign demonstrate just how strongly the American people are looking to fundamentally change business as usual in Washington. We are proud of the millions of volunteers and more than two million donors to the Obama campaign who will provide the backbone of our campaign to put America back on track and reject the old politics and failed Bush policies, which is all John McCain is offering.”
The ability of Obama to grassroots fundraise is something that has never been seen in American politics. The McCain campaign was absolutely giddy that they raised $27 million yesterday, but their joy was short lived. To put this in perspective, McCain and the Republican National Committee (RNC) have $96 million on hand. Obama himself has $65.8. The problem for the Republicans is that the RNC money is not only for John McCain. That money also must be used for party activities and to help fund congressional races.
I think it only a matter of time before Obama out raises McCain and the RNC all by himself, but I suspect that his August haul will be reflect his vacation and lack of activity, but his numbers for September, after he accepts the nomination, will be huge. Why is this money important? It allows Obama to run a truly national campaign, a luxury that a non-incumbent Democrat has not had in decades. Obama will be able to pour money into the critical swing states, and fundraising advantage or not, this election is likely to be decided by a few states.