President Obama's motorcade heads to a fundraiser in downtown Seattle, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011.
President Obama's motorcade heads to a fundraiser in downtown Seattle, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011. Meryl Schenker/AP
President Obama may be faring relatively poorly in voter-approval polls but he still seems to be polling well when it comes to that all-important political fuel — cash.
His campaign reported that his fundraising efforts yielded $70 million during the third quarter.
Of that total, $42.8 million will go towards the president's re-election while more than $27 million will go to the Democratic National Committee.
By way of comparison, many observers were duly impressed by Texas Gov. Rick Perry's torrid third-quarter money-raising pace on the Republican side. He outpaced the other GOP candidates by raking in $17 million in donations after officially entering the race with the quarter nearly half over.
Obama is clearly benefiting from incumbency. Few things excite many donors more than being able to say they were in the same room with the president who just flew into town on Air Force One.
Obama also doesn't have a primary challenger so Democratic donors really have nowhere else to go.
Even so, Obama continues to outraise the entire Republican field. And in an e-mail to supporters, Jim Messina, the former White House aide who is now Obama's campaign manager, suggests that the president could have raised even more if he hadn't had to cancel appearances at events to remain in Washington during the debt-ceiling fight:
Here's what you should know about what we'll report to the FEC tomorrow:
In the third fundraising quarter of this year, 606,027 people donated to this campaign—even more than gave in the record-breaking previous quarter.
Those people gave more than 766,000 total donations—98 percent of them $250 or less, at an average amount of $56. That's more than twice as many donations than we had at this point in the historic 2008 campaign.
We are focused on building infrastructure that will help us win in 2012. And each quarter we set a combined goal for the campaign and our allies at the Democratic National Committee. We far exceeded our goal of $55 million this quarter between the two organizations. Great work.
Together, Obama for America and the DNC raised more than $70 million. And it all happened during a summer when the President was focused on doing the job he was elected to do—a summer when we had to cancel a series of fundraising events and ask everyone to dig a little deeper.