If one reads the media reports on Barack Obama’s fundraising, every month is a feast for Obama’s re-election campaign and the DNC. Never mind that the totals for Obama’s campaign actually lags the pace set by George W. Bush in 2004 and is far off the pace of the supposedly billion-dollar campaign promised for 2012, or even the $600 million campaign from 2008. The media meme is that of a coolly confident incumbent President raking in the dough.
Politico’s John Bresnahan hears something entirely different:
President Barack Obama has a bleak message for House and Senate Democrats this year when it comes to campaign cash: You’re on your own.
Democratic congressional leaders, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, have privately sought as much as $30 million combined from Obama for America and the Democratic National Committee — a replay of the financial help they received from Obama in 2008 and 2010.
But that’s not going to happen, top Obama aides Jim Messina and David Plouffe told Reid and Pelosi in back-to-back meetings on Capitol Hill on Thursday, according to sources familiar with the high-level talks. It was a stark admission from a presidential campaign once expected to rake in as much as $1 billion of just how closely it is watching its own bottom line.
Messina and Plouffe told the two Hill leaders that there would be no cash transfers to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee from OFA or the DNC, at least not before Election Day, the sources said.
There are only two conclusions to reach if this report is true. Either Barack Obama is so self-absorbed that he can’t share the wealth himself, or his fundraising is going so poorly that his campaign has little wealth to share. Neither looks particularly impressive, but either way, this undermines the notion that Obama is a fundraising juggernaut that will overwhelm the eventual Republican nominee.
But speaking of sharing the wealth … isn’t it a little hypocritical for the man who once famously intoned that “I do think at a certain point you’ve made enough money” to tell his fellow Democrats that they can’t ask him for a little income redistribution from his election effort?