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Entries Tagged as 'Fundraising'

Perry’s Money Machine Sputters

November 18th, 2011 at 12:32 am 17 Comments

Back in August, which was a couple of political lifetimes ago, I wrote a piece about Texas Governor Rick Perry’s strong fundraising base, specifically his unique ability to access a key part of the GOP’s fundraising base–wealthy Republicans in Texas.

Well, it looks like that money machine is sputtering like a confused politician at a presidential debate.

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How Bad Is Republican Fundraising? Bad.

July 25th, 2011 at 7:04 am 18 Comments

I should be getting e-mail and telephone calls from Republicans but I’m just not. So far, I’ve gotten one direct mail letter from a Republican candidate for president, no telephone calls, and only generic e-mails sent to everyone on several large lists. Although I’m hardly a high-dollar donor by any stretch of the imagination, I’ve given FEC-reportable gifts (over $250) to Republicans running for federal office in 4 of the past 5 federal election cycles, similarly sized gifts in state elections, am probably on every conservative/Republican mailing list in my home state, and have donated decent amounts to Republican friends in other states.

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Republican Fundraising: It’s Worse Than it Looks

July 13th, 2011 at 8:56 am 11 Comments

Many of those engaged in conservative happy talk about the huge fundraising gap between President Obama’s haul ($86 million) and that of all Republican candidates combined (about $35 million) suggest that the Republican haul should also include the $18 million or so that the Republican National Committee presumably has in the bank. (The RNC’s June fundraising numbers aren’t yet available but it had $12 million at the end of May and has been bringing in roughly $6 million a month.)

The RNC’s haul should, indeed, “count” but the $35 million or so shouldn’t. In fact, every penny raised by the individual campaigns to date will be dissipated attacking other Republicans in the primaries while Obama will be able to save his entire $88 million to attack the Republican nominee. Incumbents who have lost elections since World War II have always had credible primary challengers who caused them to spend money in much the same as the out-of-power parties’ candidates did. Obama won’t have anything like this.

While money alone doesn’t win elections–Michael Dukakis’ 1988 campaign invented “soft money” and thereby gained a slight fundraising edge over George H.W. Bush–it’s obviously a huge help for candidates who lack the bully pulpit of the White House.  And Republicans are going to need more of it to win in 2012.

Romney Goes for Expatriate Gold

July 6th, 2011 at 4:13 pm 3 Comments

Mitt Romney is following in the footsteps of previous GOP presidential candidates, cialis sale holding a $2, diagnosis 500-per plate fundraising dinner tonight in London. The event is expected to bring in more cash than similar UK fundraisers by Giuliani, tadalafil McCain and Obama.

During the last presidential election, about 40 percent of campaign funds raised abroad came from the United Kingdom. London was first proven a successful town for acquiring campaign funds when Rudy Giuliani starting the fundraising trend in 2007 – charging between $1,000 and $10,000 per person for attending a luncheon  – with a photo opportunity raising the minimum price by $1,300.

In 2008, both McCain and Obama held similar fundraisers in London, charging the same price for a spot at their luncheons.

Now Romney is hosting a dinner for American expatriates in the UK – suggesting a contribution of $2,500 per person. If the Dartmouth House – the event’s venue – is filled to capacity, Romney is expected to raise $875,000.

To compare: In 2007, Giuliani raised around $30,000 from his UK luncheon and Obama raised double that amount. Romney’s event, if all 350 seats are filled, will raise much more.

Besides fundraising for his campaign, Stacy Hilliard, Vice Chair of Republicans Abroad UK, said Romney is also trying to appeal to the 250,000 Americans living in the United Kingdom.

“Right now it’s talking and reaching out to the American community,” she told FrumForum. “People find him to be an interesting candidate, especially since he ran last time and didn’t get the nomination. They see him as being a very polished candidate.”

Hilliard suspects that other GOP contenders will soon follow Romney’s fundraising path, holding their own luncheons and dinners in the British city – where many wealthy American bankers have made their homes.

It is also a trend to meet with British political figures – like the prime minister, or in Romney’s case, National Security Advisor Peter Ricketts – during this type of campaign fundraiser, said Hilliard.

However, only American citizens and green card holders are legally able to contribute to U.S. presidential campaigns. Since it is still early in Romney’s campaign, his focus is on potential GOP voters and contributors – not foreign leaders.

But in 2008, McCain was under investigation by Judicial Watch after being accused of accepting monetary contributions from Lord Rothschild and Nathanial Rothschield. The group’s suspicions were never proven.

Lynn Forester de Rothschild has offered her estate to Romney for his fundraising event – but it appears unlikely that she would even attempt to offer him any financial contribution.

“I feel sorry for Mitt Romney,” she told the Boston Globe. “I think Mitt Romney has the Al Gore problem, which is that he’s perfect on paper but he does not connect with people and I don’t think there’s anything he can do.”

“And I think his flip-flopping is not a good thing,” she said. “He’s made too many Faustian bargains and we need somebody who stands up for what they believe. I think Obama would roll him…I don’t think he can beat Obama.”

Pawlenty Spins His Fundraising Numbers

July 2nd, 2011 at 9:28 am 6 Comments

Today, Governor Tim Pawlenty’s spokesman, Alex Conant, released this statement:

“Gov. Pawlenty will report that his campaign has raised about $4.2 million, and begins the third quarter with more available cash-on-hand than the Republicans who won the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary had in July 2007.”

That’s very impressive, considering Mike Huckabee and John McCain won those primaries back in 2007.  Huckabee went on to become a major contender for the nomination, and still has name recognition today.  McCain, as everyone knows, went on to win the GOP nomination.  The only problem is that this is a ridiculously misleading statement.

Huckabee had hardly any name recognition at this point in 2007, and there is a reason McCain was called “The Comeback Kid.”  Comparing himself to two candidates who were considered underdogs at this point in their campaigns is rarely a good sign.

Such a spin denotes trouble in the Pawlenty campaign.  If he is compared to his current rivals in the primaries, Pawlenty is in sore shape.  Jon Huntsman (who many say is faking his campaign so he can make a better run in 2016) seems to be the only major player with less funds: $4.1 million — half of that being his own cash.  Tea Party movement godfather, Ron Paul, has raised over $4.5 million this week alone. And Mitt Romney is estimated to have three or four times as much cash on hand as Pawlenty just reported.  The fact that they are being forced to spin this kind of report to the press doesn’t bode well for Team T-Paw.

Log Cabin Director: Donors Want an Inclusive GOP

July 1st, 2011 at 7:55 am 15 Comments

FrumForum contacted Log Cabin director R. Clarke Cooper to comment on his recent appointment to the RNC finance committee:

It is worth noting there is a developing political pragmatism among party leaders as well as a number of elected Republicans who recognize the growing numbers of LGBT voters casting ballots and writing checks for Republicans. The better the RNC can reach and include LGBT voters, sales younger voters and centrists, the greater majorities can be achieved in 2012. Former RNC chairman Haley Barbour stated at the Republican Leadership Conference when speaking about the 2012 election cycle, “Purity is the enemy of victory” and he is correct. Further, major donors to the RNC would rather the party be more inclusive or at the least not take a position on social issues. As former RNC chairman Ken Mehlman stated during marriage vote in Albany,“I hope that what Republican leaders will consider is what they believe and where the voters are. They should recognize that allowing people to have equal rights under the law is frankly what our party is about.”

Obama Gets Snubbed by Wall Street

David Frum June 17th, 2011 at 12:20 am 53 Comments

In the Clinton and Bush years, it often seemed that Wall Street and the super-rich were aligning themselves with the Democratic Party.

Not any more.

Obama and his top lieutenants are working hard to win back Wall Streeters to their side after a couple of years of tension in the wake of Dodd-Frank.

Apparently financiers are still bitter about the banker-bashing then went on during the Fin-Reg debate.

Another less obvious reason why there’s tension, according to what one Wall Streeter told Ben White, is that “Obama is nothing like former President Bill Clinton and simply doesn’t like rich people, who in turn don’t like him very much.” That source said “the money would ultimately be there but would flow much more evenly to the GOP nominee (assuming it’s not a tea party candidate) than it did in ’08.”

By the numbers, you may wonder what the rich have to complain about. Corporate profits are up, and the S&P 500 has surpassed 2008 levels. President Obama has signed a renewal of the Bush tax cuts.

You might also wonder: Are the rich – and especially the Wall Street rich – truly so thin-skinned? Millions of Americans have lost jobs, homes, and savings in a financial crisis and recession caused by the recklessness and incompetence of some of this country’s most eminent and best-compensated financiers. Isn’t the president elected by those Americans entitled to grumble a little about the disaster?

Yet the theme is powerful. Mitt Romney includes in his stump speech a question: “Any business folks here? Well, this president doesn’t like you very much.”

I’m not positioned to assess the president’s likes and dislikes, but off-hand I’d guess that he likes rich people who support him and dislikes rich people who don’t. Politicians tend to be self-centered that way.

Meanwhile, business leaders need to be a little more hard-headed – and a lot less thin-skinned. The flow of negative regulations from a re-elected Obama administration is reason enough for business leaders to invest their political contributions against the Democrats, regardless of the president’s real or imagined feelings.