Obama Tops Fund Raising, Clinton Raises Half

Surprise! Once again Obama has blown out the fund raising with a $40 million take for the month of March. Hillary Clinton came in second around $20 million.

Here’s the report on Obama from The Politico:

The Obama campaign announced Thursday morning that more than 442,000 contributors gave his campaign more than $40 million in March.

That is less than the record $55 million Obama raised in February, but it’s roughly twice what Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton is estimated to have raised in March. She plans to release her totals later this month.

The campaign, which did not release an exact total, said more than 218,000 donors contributed to the campaign for the first time, and the average contribution was $96.

Campaign manager David Plouffe said: “Sen. Obama has always said that this campaign would rise or fall on the willingness of the American people to become partners in an effort to change our politics and start a new chapter in our history. … Today we’re seeing the American people’s extraordinary desire to change Washington, as tens of thousands of new contributors joined the more than a million Americans who have already taken ownership of this campaign for change. Many of our contributors are volunteering for the campaign, making our campaign the largest grass-roots army in recent political history.”

The campaign’s figures:

Total raised in March: More than $40 million
Contributors in March: More than 442,000
First-time contributors in March: More than 218,000
Average contribution: $96
Total contributors to date: More than 1,276,000

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, McCain is now consideraing the use of public financing, story from Washington Wire:

Sen. John McCain said he would consider accepting limited public financing for the general election, even if his Democratic opponent opts out and is able to raise much more.

“Obviously, I would prefer not to have to worry about fund-raising. But it depends on how much we think the opposition is going to have, how much difficulty we would have in raising money. I think we would seriously look at that at the time,” he told reporters on his bus en route to Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport from Annapolis, Md.

Candidates who accept public funding get $85 million in federal funding to spend but may not raise additional funds. Those who opt out may raise as much as they want, subject to individual contribution limits.

Luckily for McCain, I think the limitations he’ll face in fund raising can be overcome in this age of media and internet. He can produce campaign ads cheaply, just not run them all over the place. However, there are ways to deal with the lower funds with 24/7 cable news and everything else.

Still, one can’t ignore the massive funds Obama, and Clinton to an extent, continue raising. Obama has money in the bank and continues raising it from a huge amount of donors, most who have nowhere near tapped out their max donation.