Obama out-raises Romney in August but faces uphill battle against Republican SuperPACs

The Obama campaign out-raised Romney’s campaign by about $2.4 million last month, closing the fundraising gap for the the first time since April. 

“We finally closed the gap,” wrote Jim Messina, Campaign Manager for Obama for America, in an email to supporters. “We just proved we can go head to head with Romney and the Republicans and win. That can’t stop now. This will be a tight race to the end.”

The Obama campaign announced that it raised $114 million from 1.1 million individual donors – including 317,000 new donors – in August.

Although this is encouraging news, the Obama campaign will continue to face an uphill battle as Republican SuperPACs flood the airwaves with anti-Obama ads. So far this cycle, SuperPACs have spent more than $110 million against Obama, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Read more: More money, less transparency in U.S. politics after Citizens United

Romney’s campaign reported that it and the Republican National Committee collectively raised $111.6 million last month and has $168.5 million cash on hand (or COH).

“We are seeing such tremendous support from donors across the country. We will continue the hard work of raising the resources so that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan can win in November,” said Romney Victory National Finance Chairman Spencer Zwick and RNC Chairman Reince Priebus.

It’s important for both Obama and Romney to end August with the highest possible COH as their advertising campaigns shift into high gear after Labor Day.

With 8 weeks to go, both candidates – and their proxies – will be deluging voters with ads on television, radio, postal mail, billboards, and the web to:

(1) define (or re-define) who they are and what they stand for;

(2) draw contrasts against their opponents on character and on the issues through negative ads;

(3) respond to and mitigate any damaging attacks;

(4) and persuade voters to cast ballots during the early voting period (which varies state-by-state) or on Election Day to reinforce the campaigns’ on-the-ground get-out-the-vote (GOTV) efforts.


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