From NBC/NJ’s Aswini Anburajan Obama might not be beating the competition in the national polls, but he can at least keep’em in check when it comes to raising money. That’s exactly what his campaign managed to do Friday, closing a $2.1 million dollar fundraising gap between itself and the Clinton campaign.
When fundraising totals from the third quarter showed that Hillary Clinton had outraised Barack Obama by $2.1 million, the campaign’s grassroots fundraising drive kicked into high gear, and a message was sent out to supporters from Obama that said quite simply, “I need you to make a donation to close the gap.”
They finally managed to do so late Friday night, five days after the launch of the appeal. The campaign posted a “Thank You, You Closed the Gap,” on its Web site Saturday afternoon, which was followed by an email to supporters from campaign manager, David Plouffe. “Late last night, your extraordinary efforts closed the gap in resources between us and the Clinton campaign. We had expected that the drive would continue into next week, but the overwhelming response from so many of you accelerated that timetable,” the email said.
The money raised, of course, is for the 4th fundraising quarter and will not affect 3rd quarter totals. Instead, raising that amount of money in a short time span is the camapaign’s way of publicly flexing its muscles — attempting to show that it has the depth of support and organizational strength to raise millions at the drop of a hat.
But in pushing to match Clinton on the money front, the Obama campaign also displayed how much it wants to check perceptions that Clinton is the runaway favorite for the Democratic nomination. The campaign displayed a rare bluntness in its criticism of Hillary Clinton with the fundraising appeal. The email that was sent out called the Clinton campaign “the most entrenched political machine in Democratic politics.” And personalizing the familiar line of attack on lobbyists, it added: “Washington lobbyists have chosen their candidate and are determined to provide her with an overwhelming advantage.”