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Thursday, October 16, 2003


raising, spending, and matching

posted by Aziz P. at Thursday, October 16, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
And the best part is that the Dean campaign isn't running a budget deficit (unlike other campaigns...) :) From the NYT:

Howard Dean not only raised three times as much money in the last three months as his nearest rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination, but he outspent them as well.

Dr. Dean, a former governor of Vermont, paid at least $8.8 million for television advertisements, professional organizers in 13 states and maneuvers like an attention-getting plane tour to 10 cities.

Struggling to file a six-foot-high report before a midnight deadline, Dr. Dean reported raising at least $14.8 million in the last three months, closing the quarter with at least $12.4 million in the bank. He has raised $25.4 million this year.
Campaign aides say the fast-paced spending, which will be about $13 million for the year, was part of a transition to a campaign structured as much to beat President Bush as to compete with rival Democrats in early primaries.

"We're running a national campaign," said Joe Trippi, Dr. Dean's campaign manager. "That's more expensive than running a two- or three-state strategy."
The Dean campaign also struggled to file on time as it compiled tens of thousands of small donors, many of whom gave over the Internet. While the campaign did not have a precise tally for what it had collected online, Mr. Trippi said Internet contributions accounted for about half what was brought in this quarter.

In addition, fewer than 1 percent of the campaign's contributors had reached the maximum $2,000 that an individual can give to a presidential candidate, Mr. Trippi said, meaning that the campaign may be able to continue to draw money from its base of donors.

Have you seen the picture of the FEC filing documents from the o-blog? it's astounding!

All this success is fueling speculation again about whether Dean will opt out of public financing. The LA Times reports:

For the year, Dean has raised about $25 million. But as striking as Dean's fund-raising is his spending: He may have spent nearly $9 million during the quarter, according to figures provided by his staff. That's significantly more than the $6.4 million that Al Gore, then the vice president, spent during the comparable period in 1999. And it's at least twice as much as was spent in that period by former New Jersey Sen. Bill Bradley, who lost the 2000 Democratic presidential nomination to Gore.
Dean is spending money at a rate that many analysts believe may cause him problems next year if he remains within the public financing system. That process provides the candidates with a federal match for part of their contributions, but it requires them to limit their spending to around $49 million in the race for the nomination.

Some analysts said the pace of Dean's fund-raising and spending might signal that he intended to pull out of the public system, which would allow him to spend unlimited sums. "At this level of spending, I think they have made the calculation that they are going to opt out," said Donna Brazile, Gore's 2000 campaign manger. Trippi said the Dean campaign wouldn't make that decision "for a while."

Bush has already opted out of the system — as he did in 2000 — and is planning to raise at least $170 million through the Republican convention early next September. After their parties' conventions, Bush and the Democratic nominee will be limited to spending public money.

If Dean opts out of the system, it may encourage other Democratic candidates to follow; Sen. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts has already said he may pull out if Dean does.
Anthony Corrado, a campaign-finance expert at Colby College in Maine, said that if Dean remains in the system, he can expect to get about $13 million to $14 million in matching funds. Because Dean has already raised $25 million, if he were to accept public financing, he might be allowed under the spending caps to raise as little as an extra $9 million or $10 million through next July's Democratic convention, Corrado said.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.