The candidates for the US presidency have been raising millions of dollars every month. Find out below who’s ahead in the money race and where the cash is coming from.
Barack Obama has raised more money than John McCain partly because of the excitement generated by the Democratic nomination battle. His donors had pressing reasons to donate, from January right through to June, while Mr McCain wrapped up the Republican nomination in March.
Mr McCain has decided to take public financing, which means that from 1 September he has a maximum of $84m [£45m] to spend on his campaign. The McCain campaign is no longer accepting donations, except to its compliance fund – money to pay for lawyers, accountants and other expenses involved in maintaining compliance with federal election laws. The Republican National Committee, however, can still raise money to support the McCain campaign.
Barack Obama is the first candidate not to take public financing since the system was introduced in the mid-1970s. He will have no spending limit.
So far, the Republican National Committee’s traditional strength at fundraising has given it a clear lead. Though the Democrats out-raised them for the first time in August, the Republicans still have four times as much in the bank.
There is a question about how effectively they will be able to use this huge cash advantage. Election rules state that, because John McCain has accepted public funding, the Republicans can only provide $19m of direct help to his campaign.
After this $19m, the money should only be used to get out their base through registering and motivating Republican voters. However, political parties are adept at finding loopholes in electoral guidelines, so they may still find ways to press their advantage.
A look at where the candidates are receiving most donations reveals that Barack Obama has a distinct advantage in heavily urbanised states such as New York, Illinois and California, while John McCain is receiving significant support from the key battleground state of Florida. The McCain campaign is weaker in the liberal North-east.
One area where the Obama campaign has broken the mould of US election finance is in making big efforts to attract small donors. As a result Mr Obama has raised three times as much as John McCain from donors contributing less than $200.
Anyone making a donation above $200 must indicate their occupation. These figures can be combined with donations from unions, industry associations and political groups to give an idea of who is supporting each campaign.
John McCain is only significantly ahead on donations from retired people and from the oil and gas industries. In all almost every other area, Barack Obama is either on roughly level terms or ahead, even in those where the Republicans would expect to be strong, such as real estate, business and finance.
The majority of a campaign’s spending is split between media – the adverts, websites and leaflets that deliver the candidate’s message – and administration, which includes offices, salaries and travel.
The biggest single expense is paid television advertising, which has been concentrated in the key battleground states.
The campaigns also reinvest a portion of their money on fundraising activities, such as live events and phoning supporters, to generate more donations.
This is an interesting site Campaign Money it tells a lot. Very Interesting for sure.
Snooping about is rather enlightening. Who gives what to who and then who they give it too, etc.
This site tracks Oil Company Donations very interesting indeed. Oil Companies certainly loved George Bush.
Follow the Oil: Campaign Donations
Total Money Receipts $374,659,453
From Individuals $190,354,483 (Amounts over $200)
From Political Action Committees $2,545,821
From Indian Tribes $12,000
From Oil Companies $2,652,225
A little here a little there but it adds up to a lot in the end.
It has a break down of those who donated as well.
McCain received $1,683,544 from Big oil in 2008
Donations from 1999 to present
Some have money left over I have to wonder where the left over’s go like from Giuliani
Total Money Receipts Total Money Receipts $64,442,649
Cash left over $386,298
So what happens to the left over money? Who gets it?