Amazing news about Barack Obama raising over $30 million in the second quarter. No presidential candidate has ever done that!
As a grassroots Howard Dean activist, I was naturally intrigued to read Jerome Armstrong‘s thoughts on the Obama-Dean fundraising comparisons:
The numbers of Obama now, 258,000 donors and 358,000 contributions, are nearing the number that Howard Dean took in during his ’04 presidential campaign. The number of donors to Dean’s campaign was approximately 318,000 and the total number of donations made was approximately 454,000. The comparison, as far as the numbers go, shows that Obama has set new records for this point in the campaign, but the campaigns are drastically different in origination.
Obama has had the advantage of having mainstream media coverage that has been very widespread and positive. It’s really only in the liberal blogosphere and on liberal websites, that you see any tough analysis of Obama’s candidacy at all. That’s something that doesn’t compare with Howard Dean, which seemed the exact opposite.
Dean’s widespread coverage was on the blogs, and among the liberal websites, and very little outside of that until the end of the year. Positive? The establishment’s resistance to Dean was immense, and the mainstream media coverage, what little of there was, would always counter-balance the positive things happening with Dean’s campaign with negative quotes from insider Democrats. Dean depended on the internet and small donors; Obama got 70 percent of his 1Q money from $1,000 and up donors. It’s on the strength of having such a high-donor base that Obama nearly broke the record that Bush set during the second quarter of 2003, when Bush took in over $35 million.
I think the real story here, is not how Obama is similar to Dean, but how he is different. One of the things I noticed during the 1Q, is how a relatively small part of Obama’s 1Q raised came from the internet. In the 1Q this cycle, is that Obama raised $6.9 million (out of $26 million) over the internet; just above Edwards, who raised $3.3 million (out of $14 million) over the net. In comparison, Dean, who raised about $50M overall for his campaign, had $25M of it come directly over the internet. Over half of Dean’s funds came from online donors (and even more than half in the first few quarters), but much less of a percentage for Edwards, and even less for Obama (I’ve not seen internet-raised numbers for 2Q from any candidate).
It’s not the internet, but instead it’s Obama’s strategy of having paid events has been the boon needed to skyrocket his donor numbers. I’ve not seen a story on the phenomenon that he’s created, but the paid venues have got to have provided Obama with tens of thousands of donors to add to his overall numbers. It’s the speaking-venue donors (similar to a rock concert), not internet donors, that’s leveraged the donor numbers for Obama; and alongside the astounding high-donor numbers that have sky-rocketed his total raised, it’s combined to create a compelling narrative that gives a strategic advantage to Obama.
Read the whole article at MyDD.com