Deja Vu: Obama Camp Raises Record $150 Million in September

The Obama camp had the most profitable fundraising month in 2012 election cycle yet. The campaign raised more than $150 million in September, shattering its August record of $114 million. 

The Wall Street Journal reported the Obama campaign’s fundraising haul on Thursday, citing “people familiar with the totals.”

In August, the Obama raised $114, breaking the Romney campaign’s three-month streak in which it beat the Obama campaign in fundraising.

The Obama campaign in August raised $25 million from people donating $200 or less. In addition, while more specific details of the September numbers are not yet known, “more than 2 million people” had donated $25 or less as of August to the Obama campaign. 

Under Federal Election Commission (FEC) regulations, campaigns have to make their “best efforts” to collect information about contributors who donate $50-$200, but those who donate less than $200 do not have to be publicly disclosed.

Further, all donations less than $50 fall under the “Pass-the-Hat” rule, which means campaigns do not have to make their “best efforts” to collect identifying information on these donors and can actually report all such donations under a lump sum. 

The Obama campaign’s September fundraising numbers may give people a feeling of déjà vu. 

In September of 2008, the Obama campaign also raised $150 million, which was a record at that time, and the campaign added 632,000 new donors then. 

David Plouffe, Obama’s 2008 campaign manager, wrote in his 2009 book, The Audacity to Win, about how even he was surprised by the amount of money the campaign was able to raise.  

“Whenever I checked our fund-raising performance online, it was like watching a volcano erupt,” Plouffe wrote in his book about the 2008 campaign. “There were times when we were raising $250,000, $300,000, even $500,000 an hour. It was remarkable, and critical.”


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