Fundraising for the 2008 United States presidential election

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In the 2008 United States presidential election, fundraising increased significantly compared to the levels achieved in previous presidential elections.

According to required campaign filings as reported by the Federal Election Commission (FEC), 148 candidates for all parties collectively raised $1,644,712,232 and spent $1,601,104,696 for the primary and general campaigns combined through November 24, 2008. The amounts raised and spent by the major candidates, according to the same source, were as follows:

Candidate (Party) Amount raised Amount spent Votes Average spent per vote
Barack Obama (D) $778,642,962 $760,370,195 69,498,215 $10.94
John McCain (R) $383,913,834 $358,008,447 59,948,240 $5.97
Ralph Nader (I) $4,496,180 $4,187,628 738,720 $5.67
Bob Barr (L) $1,383,681 $1,345,202 523,713 $2.57
Chuck Baldwin (C) $261,673 $234,309 199,437 $1.17
Cynthia McKinney (G) $240,130 $238,968 161,680 $1.48
Excludes spending by independent expenditure concerns.
Source: Federal Election Commission[1]

Democratic Party candidate Barack Obama created a broad grassroots movement and a new method of campaigning by courting and mobilizing activists, donations, and voters through the Internet (see grassroots fundraising. It was part of a campaign that mobilized grassroots workers in every state. Obama also set fundraising records in more than one month by gaining support from a record-breaking number of individual small donors.[2]

The reported cost of campaigning for president has increased significantly in recent years. One source reported that if the costs for both Democratic and Republican campaigns were added together (for the presidential primary election, general election, and the political conventions), the costs have more than doubled in only eight years ($448.9 million in 1996, $649.5 million in 2000, and $1.01 billion in 2004).[3] In January 2007, Federal Election Commission Chairman Michael E. Toner estimated that the 2008 race would be a $1 billion election, and that to be taken seriously, a candidate would have needed to raise at least $100 million by the end of 2007.[4]

Although he had said he would not be running for president, published reports in 2007 indicated that billionaire and New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg had been considering a presidential bid as an independent with up to $1 billion of his own fortune to finance it.[5] Bloomberg ultimately ended this speculation by unequivocally stating that he would not run.[6] Had Bloomberg decided to run, he would not have needed to campaign in the primary elections or participate in the conventions, reducing both the necessary length and cost of his campaign.

With the increase in money expenditures, many candidates did not use the public financing system funded by the presidential election campaign fund checkoff. John McCain,[7] Tom Tancredo,[8] John Edwards,[9] Chris Dodd,[10] and Joe Biden[11] qualified for and elected to take public funds throughout the primary process. Major Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama chose not to participate in the public financing system.[12]

Howard Dean collected large contributions through the Internet in his 2004 primary run. In 2008, candidates went even further to reach out to Internet users through their own sites and such sites as YouTube, MySpace, and Facebook.[13][14]

On December 16, 2007, Ron Paul collected $6 million, more money on a single day through Internet donations than any presidential candidate in US history.[15][16][17]

Fundraising plays a central role in many presidential campaigns and is a key factor in determining the viability of candidates. Money raised is applied in many ways, such as for the salaries of non-volunteers in the campaign, transportation, campaign materials, and media advertisements. Under United States law, candidates are required to file campaign finance details with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) at the end of every calendar quarter. Summaries of these reports are made available to the public shortly thereafter, revealing the relative financial situations of all the campaigns.

Election cycle summary[edit]

On February 22, 2008, the New York Times reported for the period through January 31, 2008, with Hillary Clinton's campaign spending $106 million, Barack Obama's campaign spending $115 million and John McCain's committee $41 million."[18] In general, the current Federal Elections Commission election cycle-to-date statistics may be viewed online, in summary and tablular form.[19]

Through December 31, 2007[edit]

Quarterly FEC reports summarize the total contributions (from individuals, political party committees, other political committees, and the candidate), loans, receipts (incoming money), and disbursements (outgoing money) for the election cycle. The tables immediately below include finance totals from the start of the election cycle up to December 31, 2007. All values in US dollars. Candidates sorted by total campaign contributions. Another key factor in the Presidential Campaign finance is the so called "Individual Financing"

Democrats[edit]

Candidate Contributions Loans Received All Receipts Operating Expenditures All Disbursements
Hillary Clinton 107,056,586 0 118,301,659 77,804,197 106,000,000
Barack Obama 102,092,819 0 103,802,537 84,497,445 85,176,289
John Edwards 34,986,088 8,974,714 44,259,386 33,513,005 36,468,929
Bill Richardson 22,421,742 1,000,000 23,671,031 21,401,414 21,857,565
Chris Dodd 10,414,392 1,302,811 16,547,015 14,040,555 14,057,455
Joe Biden 8,245,241 1,132,114 11,405,771 9,518,537 9,538,687
Dennis Kucinich 3,869,613 0 3,870,840 3,638,219 3,641,234
Combined Total 289,086,481 12,409,639 321,858,239 244,413,372 251,093,944

† This candidate has withdrawn their presidential bid.

‡ This candidate has suspended their presidential bid.

Republicans[edit]

Candidate Contributions Loans Received All Receipts Operating Expenditures All Disbursements
Rudy Giuliani 58,789,214 0 61,645,421 48,197,458 48,868,609
Mitt Romney 53,915,464 35,350,000 90,076,402 86,670,597 87,644,955
John McCain 37,480,640 2,971,697 42,094,078 30,721,676 39,145,650
Ron Paul 28,146,661 0 28,219,301 20,262,288 20,380,121
Fred Thompson 21,740,757 0 21,812,645 19,495,821 19,672,378
Mike Huckabee 8,990,477 0 9,003,810 7,090,971 7,107,365
Sam Brownback 3,653,570 0 4,374,058 4,295,606 4,368,746
Duncan Hunter 2,321,563 130,000 2,496,085 2,275,986 2,299,490
Tommy Thompson 1,024,992 196,000 1,226,129 1,213,274 1,223,567
Jim Gilmore 357,986 34,804 404,881 384,026 388,426
Tom Tancredo
Combined Total 216,421,324 38,682,501 261,352,810 220,607,703 231,099,307

† This candidate has withdrawn their presidential bid.

‡ This candidate has suspended their presidential bid.

4th quarter 2007[edit]

This is a summary of campaign finance for the fourth quarter of 2007, spanning from October 1, 2007 to December 31, 2007. All data has been extracted from reports provided by the Federal Elections Commission.[20]

By default, the tables below sort the candidates by Receipts without loans for the 4th quarter of 2007. These values are largely composed of campaign contributions, but also include offsets to expenditures (refunds, rebates, etc.) and other receipts (dividents, interest, etc.). To sort by another value, click the column's icon. All values in US Dollars.

Democrats[edit]

Candidate Total Receipts Money Raised
Primaries
Money Raised
General
Loans Received Receipts w/o Loans Money Spent Cash On Hand Total Debt Cash on Hand Minus Debt
Hillary Clinton 27,339,347 19,954,747 3,119,909 0 26,776,409 39,886,410 37,947,874 4,987,425 32,960,449
Barack Obama 23,526,004 15,117,691 920,081 0 22,847,568 40,896,076 18,626,248 792,681 17,833,567
John Edwards 13,900,622 8,974,714 4,834,761 18,537,625 7,790,458 9,067,278 -1,276,820
Joe Biden 3,190,122 1,132,114 2,055,971 3,209,364 1,867,392 2,073,418 -206,026
Bill Richardson 4,971,095 1,000,000 3,898,226 8,979,217 1,813,466 374,164 1,439,302
Dennis Kucinich 1,738,916 0 1,738,679 1,785,429 282,826  – 282,826

† This candidate has withdrawn his presidential bid.

‡ This candidate has suspended his/her presidential bid.

Republicans[edit]

Candidate Total Receipts Loans Received Receipts w/o Loans Money Spent Cash On Hand Total Debt Cash on Hand Minus Debt
Rudy Giuliani 14,391,901 0 14,177,287 18,264,914 12,776,812 1,166,509 11,610,303
Ron Paul 19,951,290 0 19,951,290 17,556,672 7,839,421 0 7,839,421
Mitt Romney 27,247,333 18,000,000 9,068,011 34,032,404 2,431,447 35,350,000 -32,918,553
Fred Thompson 8,984,534 0 8,925,284 13,966,011 2,140,267 404,221 1,736,046
John McCain 9,969,292 2,971,697 6,836,072 10,509,492 2,948,428 4,516,030 -1,567,602
Mike Huckabee 6,651,957 0 6,642,586 5,406,812 1,896,446 97,676 1,798,770
Sam Brownback 136,944 0 110,773 226,871 5,324 32,208 -26,884
Tommy Thompson 63,722 28,500 32,756 61,740 2,562 197,912 -195,350

† This candidate has withdrawn his presidential bid.

‡ This candidate has suspended his presidential bid.

3rd quarter 2007[edit]

Campaign Finance Information according to the Federal Elections Commission for the end of the third calendar quarter, 2007, ending September 30, 2007. The committees reporting may have amended their filings in the months following the initial reporting deadlines.[21]

Democrats[edit]

Candidate Money Raised, 3Q Money Raised
Primaries
Money Raised
General
Loans Received, 3Q Money Spent, 3Q Total Receipts Cash On Hand Total Debt After Debt
Hillary Clinton $27,859,861 $18,903,993.69 $4,088,969.66  – $22,623,680 $90,935,788 $50,463,013 $2,347,486 $48,115,527
Barack Obama $21,343,291 $14,429,487 $1,156,525  – $21,519,789 $80,256,426 $36,087,190 $1,409,739 $34,677,451
John Edwards $7,157,232  – $8,271,937 $30,329,151 $12,397,048  – $12,397,048
Bill Richardson $5,358,585  – $6,666,681 $18,699,936 $5,821,587 $75,222 $5,746,365
Christopher Dodd $1,522,061  – $4,025,458 $13,598,152 $3,874,874 - $3,874,874
Joe Biden $1,757,394  – $2,635,896 $8,215,739 $1,886,340 $128,210 $1,758,130
Dennis Kucinich $1,011,696  – $888,773 $2,130,200 $327,094 - $327,094
Mike Gravel $130,598  – $144,225 $379,794 $17,527 $85,853 -$68,326

Republicans[edit]

Candidate Money Raised, 3Q Loans Received, 3Q Money Spent, 3Q Total Receipts Cash On Hand Total Debt After Debt
Rudy Giuliani $11,624,255  – $13,300,649 $47,253,520 $16,649,825 $169,256 $16,480,569
Mitt Romney $9,896,719 $8,500,000 $21,301,755 $62,829,068 $9,216,517 $17,350,000 - $8,133,483
Fred Thompson $9,750,820 †  – $5,706,366 $12,828,110 $7,121,744 $678,432 $6,443,312
Ron Paul $5,258,455  – $2,169,644 $8,268,452 $5,443,667  – $5,443,667
John McCain $5,734,477  – $5,470,277 $32,124,785 $3,488,627 $1,730,691 $1,757,936
Mike Huckabee $1,034,486  – $819,376 $2,345,797 $651,300 $47,810 $603,490
Duncan Hunter $486,356 $50,000 $618,117 $1,890,873 $132,741 $50,000 $82,741
Tom Tancredo $767,152  – $1,209,583 $3,538,244 $110,079 $295,603 - $185,524
Sam Brownback $925,745  – $1,278,856 $4,235,333 $94,653  – $94,653

† Number equals third quarter totals only. Friends of Fred Thompson Inc. received $3,077,290 covering period 06/04/2007 to 06/30/2007, and reported $12,828,110 in total receipts for the third quarter report.[22]

2nd quarter 2007[edit]

Campaign Finance Information according to the Federal Elections Commission as of July 17, 2007.[23]

Democrats[edit]

Candidate Money Raised, 2Q Money Raised
Primaries
Money Raised
General
Loans Received, 2Q Money Spent, 2Q Total Receipts Cash On Hand
Hillary Clinton $27,021,358 $18,799,440.01 $5,860,372.50  – $12,769,306 $63,075,927 $45,226,832
Barack Obama $33,120,440 $23,502,207 $2,134,666  – $16,042,388 $58,912,520 $36,263,689
John Edwards $9,097,495  – $6,485,422 $23,129,158 $13,242,954
Bill Richardson $7,090,278  – $4,983,067 $13,339,633 $7,129,684
Christopher Dodd $3,280,284  – $4,384,580 $12,076,091 $6,378,271
Joe Biden $2,451,180  – $2,517,654 $6,461,745 $2,772,442
Dennis Kucinich $757,035  – $707,653 $1,117,566 $213,269
Mike Gravel $140,510 -$10,000 $99,866 $238,745 $31,141

Republicans[edit]

Candidate Money Raised, 2Q Loans Received, 2Q Money Spent, 2Q Total Receipts Cash On Hand
Rudy Giuliani $17,599,292  – $11,222,806 $35,269,625 $18,326,820
Mitt Romney $14,275,263 $6,500,000 $20,739,814 $44,432,350 $12,121,554
John McCain $11,591,044  – $13,071,657 $25,328,694 $3,224,428
Ron Paul $2,369,453  – $539,517 $3,009,997 $2,354,855
Tom Tancredo $1,466,188  – $1,474,791 $2,807,879 $598,451
Mike Huckabee $765,873  – $702,622 $1,310,753 $437,169
Sam Brownback $1,425,767  – $1,798,493 $3,321,965 $433,900
Duncan Hunter $814,417  – $874,042 $1,352,941 $212,927
Tommy Thompson $461,555 $25,000 $504,631 $890,398 $121,648

1st quarter 2007[edit]

Campaign Finance Information according to the Federal Elections Commission as of March 31, 2007.[24]

Democrats[edit]

Candidate Money Raised Money Raised
Primaries
Money Raised
General
Money Spent Cash On Hand
Hillary Clinton $36,054,569 $16,709,691.30 $6,986,340.00 $5,079,789 $30,974,780
Barack Obama $25,797,722 $19,433,812 $972,039 $6,605,201 $19,192,521
John Edwards $14,031,663 $3,299,782 $10,731,881
Christopher Dodd $8,795,706 $1,313,239 $7,482,467
Bill Richardson $6,249,355 $1,226,882 $5,022,473
Joe Biden $4,013,090 $1,174,174 $2,838,916
Dennis Kucinich $358,569 $194,682 $163,887
Mike Gravel $108,236 $107,737 $498

Republicans[edit]

Candidate Money Raised Money Spent Cash On Hand
Rudy Giuliani $18,029,974 $6,080,239 $11,949,735
Mitt Romney $21,084,634 $10,332,450 $11,863,653
John McCain $14,798,613 $9,617,814 $5,180,799
Sam Brownback $1,871,058 $1,064,432 $806,626
Tom Tancredo $1,256,090 $711,012 $575,078
Ron Paul $639,989 $115,070 $524,919
Mike Huckabee $544,157 $170,239 $373,918
Duncan Hunter $538,524 $265,972 $272,552
Tommy Thompson $392,128 $252,405 $139,723
Jim Gilmore $203,897 $113,790 $90,107

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Financial Summary Report Search Results". fec.gov. Retrieved December 22, 2008. 
  2. ^ "Top Presidential Candidate 2008 Websites". Hitwise. Archived from the original on October 17, 2008. 
  3. ^ Kennedy, Helen (January 14, 2007). "Wanna be Prez? First get $100M". New York Daily News. Retrieved February 1, 2007. 
  4. ^ Kirkpatrick, David (January 23, 2007). "Death Knell May Be Near for Public Election Funds". The New York Times. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  5. ^ Smith, Ben (June 19, 2007). "Billion-Dollar elephant inches toward run". The Politico. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  6. ^ Bloomberg, Michael R. (February 28, 2008). "I’m Not Running for President, but ...". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved July 18, 2008. 
  7. ^ "McCain First Presidential Candidate Declared Eligible for Primary Matching Funds in 2008 Race" (Press release). Federal Election Commission. August 27, 2007. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  8. ^ "Tancredo Second Presidential Candidate Declared Eligible for Primary Matching Funds in 2008 Race" (Press release). Federal Election Commission. September 12, 2007. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  9. ^ "Edwards Third Presidential Candidate Declared Eligible for Primary Matching Funds in 2008 Race" (Press release). Federal Election Commission. November 1, 2007. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  10. ^ "Dodd Fourth Presidential Candidate Declared Eligible for Primary Matching Funds in 2008 Race" (Press release). Federal Election Commission. November 27, 2007. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  11. ^ "Biden Fifth Presidential Candidate Declared Eligible for Primary Matching Funds in 2008 Race" (Press release). Federal Election Commission. December 4, 2007. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  12. ^ Montopoli, Brian (April 9, 2008). "Obama Poised To Turn Down Public Financing". CBS News. Retrieved July 15, 2009. 
  13. ^ "Questions, not answers, highlight YouTube debate". CNN. July 24, 2007. Retrieved March 14, 2008. 
  14. ^ Stephanie Garry (June 8, 2007). "Candidates court young voters online". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  15. ^ Kenneth Vogel (December 17, 2007). "'Money bomb': Ron Paul raises $6 million in 24-hour period". USA Today (The Politico). Retrieved March 14, 2008. 
  16. ^ "Breaking News: Ron Paul campaign donors set a record". Los Angeles Times. December 17, 2007. Retrieved September 15, 2008. 
  17. ^ Larry Fester (November 5, 2007). "Ron Paul makes fund raising history". USA Daily. Archived from the original on January 12, 2008. 
  18. ^ Michael Luo, Jo Becker and Patrick Healy (2008-02-22). "Clinton Donors Worried by Campaign’s Spending". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-02-22. 
  19. ^ Federal Elections Commission, 2007-2008 Cycle http://herndon1.sdrdc.com/cgi-bin/cancomsrs/?_08+CAN+00 Retrieved April 8, 2008
  20. ^ SELECTED PRESIDENTIAL REPORTS FOR THE 2007 YEAR-END
  21. ^ SELECTED PRESIDENTIAL REPORTS FOR THE 2007 OCTOBER QUARTERLY
  22. ^ Contributions For Friends Of Fred Thompson Inc
  23. ^ SELECTED PRESIDENTIAL REPORTS FOR THE 2007 JULY QUARTERLY
  24. ^ SELECTED PRESIDENTIAL REPORTS FOR THE 2007 APRIL QUARTERLY