Will President Obama’s jump into the super PAC game level the playing field among his rivals? Although he has criticized those who take PAC money in the past, and now has joined in the game, he just isn’t keeping up with the pace set by the Republicans.
Obama’s super-PAC, Priorities USA raised just $59,000 in January, while Mitt Romney’s Restore Our Future raised $6.6 million, and Newt Gingrich’s raised $11 million, according to a recent Fox News report.
The article quoted Priorities USA co-founder Bill Burton as saying in an email that “there has been an increase in interest and enthusiasm” since Obama’s campaign started the fundraising efforts.
It remains to be seen however, if the PAC can attract numbers in the same league with Gingrich’s Winning Our Future or Romney’s Restoring Our Future, which have been in the game longer, and are offering some stiff competition to Priorities USA, a relative newcomer.
And who are we kidding by expecting that these PACs won’t coordinate or otherwise strategize with the candidates? Justice Kennedy, who wrote the opinion for the Supreme Court’s January 1, 2010 Citizen’s united decision clearly did anticipate the outcomes that we will now see.
Newt Gingrich’s campaigns bankrolled almost exclusively by one donor. As one until recently-prominent politician has said, when you have the rooster guard the henhouse, you will have chicken for dinner every night.
The Obama camp has until recently, banked on a network of small donations from individuals, mostly sent through online campaigns. His campaign still has the funding of the Democratic National Committee behind it, although combined resources are trailing those of the Republican fundraising machine.
Comedian Bill Maher has recently entered the spotlight by donating $1 million to the Obama super PAC, according to the Christian Science Monitor.
The site quotes Mr. Maher on Yahoo’s CrazyStupidPolitics special as saying, “I would like tonight to announce a donation to the Obama super PAC, which has the very unfortunate tongue-twister name PriorityUSA Action “, and reports that his publicist told Deadline Hollywood that he said, “it was the wisest investment I think I could make.”
It could be that Maher is looking for a post in the next Obama White House, the site says. Which leads us back to the conclusion that the playing field may now be level, but we are all in the mud.