July 18, 2008 in Nation/World

Obama fundraising outpaces McCain

Democratic candidate raised $52 million in June
By John McCormick Chicago Tribune
 

Amid a stepped-up fundraising schedule, Sen. Barack Obama’s campaign said Thursday that it raised $52 million in June, posting his second-best month of the year and a total more than twice as high as the amount reported earlier by Sen. John McCain.

The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee’s campaign announced the figure in an e-mail to supporters that urged additional contributions.

The June total was $30 million higher than what he raised in May, a month considered a bit sluggish for a candidate who has repeatedly shattered fundraising records.

McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, had reported raising $22 million in June, a record for him. Obama’s monthly record of $55 million was set in February.

Unknown is how much Obama spent in June, as he moved from competing against Sen. Hillary rodham Clinton for the Democratic nomination to a general election battle with McCain. That number will not be reported until later this month.

Obama appears to be spending aggressively, opening dozens of offices in battleground states as well as traditionally Republican states. His campaign has also started to run television ads in 18 states, as well as selectively on nationwide cable.

At the end of June, Obama and the Democratic National Committee had a combined $92 million in the bank, while McCain and the Republican National Committee had about $95 million.

Even as he reported the monthly total, Obama campaign manager David Plouffe asked for more. “Can you make a donation of $25 now to strengthen our movement for change?” he wrote to supporters.

Obama decided to bypass the public financing system for the fall campaign, allowing him to raise and spend as much as he likes. McCain has agreed to participate in the system, as have all previous presidential nominees since it was established more than three decades ago following the Watergate scandal. He will get $84 million in public money.

The Illinois senator would have received the same amount for his general election effort. Instead, his campaign has set a goal of raising $300 million during a five-month period that ends in October, which means his June total of $52 million is slightly behind pace.

In almost every major city Obama has visited in recent weeks, he has spent time attending fundraisers to boost his campaign fund and one he shares with the DNC. Last weekend he raised $1.2 million in a single stop in Newport Beach, Calif.


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