The RNC finished August, traditionally a slow fundraising month, with $9.3 million in cash on hand and $15.9 million in debt. The DNC’s August haul was reported Monday by Reuters, which attributed Democratic officials as suggesting that the committee’s low numbers were a result of President Barack Obama’s focus on reaching a deal with Republicans on the debt ceiling.

Republican officials dismissed those claims, crediting the RNC’s August total to surging support among conservative activists and major donors as well as Chairman Reince Priebus’ national finance strategy.

Republican officials said the $8.17 million raised came from a mixture of small and large donors, adding that the committee did not make any unusual push for contributions last month.