Obama's Big-Money Donations Lagging

$2K gifts number less than half of what they did at this point in 2008
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 19, 2012 4:00 AM CDT
US President Barack Obama leaves after speaking during a Democratic campaign fundraiser in Bellevue, Washington, February 17, 2012. AFP PHOTO / Saul LOEB   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – The Obama re-election campaign is out-earning the Republicans, and has collected donations from more than 1.4 million people. But one area where President Obama is badly lagging is with big-money donations—an issue that political observers say could presage problems to come, reports the Washington Post. At this point in Obama's first campaign for president, he had received more than 23,000 large donations of $2,000 or more. This time, though, he has received just 11,000 such donations—not even one-quarter the number George W. Bush received at the same point in his re-election.

“Some people think these Republicans are easy marks, and they aren’t taking it as seriously as they need to yet,” said one Obama volunteer who hosts fundraisers. But Obama's re-election campaign appears to be stepping up its wooing of big-money donors. On Friday alone, the president attended five events in two states, raking in more than $5.5 million. Despite Obama and the DNC having raised $255.2 million as of Jan. 31, more than Bush had in 2004, Obama has also spent more and has less cash on hand. (Read more President Obama stories.)

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