December 5th, 2008
09:23 AM ET
9 years ago

Obama's gamble pays off

Obama's campaign brought in nearly $750 million dollars.

Obama's campaign brought in nearly $750 million dollars.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - He’s the three-quarters of a billion dollar man.

Barack Obama's presidential campaign hauled in nearly $750 million dollars during this very long and historic campaign for the White House. That's more than twice what his opponent, Republican presidential nominee John McCain, raised and it's more than what George W. Bush and John Kerry combined raked in during the 2004 presidential campaign.

In a report filed with the Federal Election Commission Thursday, the Obama campaign reported spending over $100 million during the final few weeks leading up to the November 4 election, far more than McCain.

Obama opted out of taking public funds during the September to November general election period, becoming the first candidate for president to opt out of public financing since the system was created in the 1970s. Obama gambled that he could raise more money than the $84 million McCain received in public funds. That gamble apparently paid off.

Some other numbers: The Obama campaign raised $104 million in the five weeks leading up to and just after Election Day. And as of November 24, the last day included in this report, the Obama campaign had nearly $30 million left in the bank.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • FEC • John Kerry • John McCain • Uncategorized
soundoff (268 Responses)
  1. A. Austen

    This is obsene! We are at a point in American history when the White House is "For Sale" to the highest bidder.

    December 5, 2008 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  2. Purple Nurple

    I gave a small portion of that and I see it was well spent!!

    December 5, 2008 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  3. Charles in Atlanta

    This is yet another example of the President-Elect thinking strategically. The real figures are how much was spent by Mr. Obama and the DNC vs. Mr. McCain and the RNC. Mr. Obama saw that the RNC had deeper pockets than the DNC and that his campaign had to make up the difference. His decision to forego public funds proved to be prudent indeed!

    December 5, 2008 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  4. Jack Jodell, Minneapolis, MN

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with the way President Obama raised money. Instead of concentrating exclusively on fat cats and special interest groups he would have later been beholden to, he opened up his pleas and got contributions from millions of average citizens. That's even BETTER than government-run public financing! OBAMA ALL THE WAY TO 2017!

    December 5, 2008 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  5. 60 year old white female and proud supporter of PE Obama

    Tango: PE Obama can not contribute money donated to his campaign to pay off Clinton's debt.

    December 5, 2008 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  6. SCC

    Lend the $30M to the automakers.

    December 5, 2008 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  7. Jon in Texas

    I wonder if he would have raised that much money if people had known how bad the market would tank and how many jobs would be cut this year. A lot of people are probably wishing they had held on to that $20 so they could buy groceries this week.

    December 5, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  8. Biff


    Right now the answer is paying for the inaugural stuff. Usually contributors and big business and lobbyists host many of these... Obama is on his own in that regard. I have given several times to Obama also. I will now begin sending some to Hillary.

    December 5, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  9. PJP

    Well now I hope Michelle Obama will go and get some new clothes, something that looks good on her, since they have the money!!!

    December 5, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  10. Audrey in Georgia

    If the 18 million people who voted for Hillary give $1, then her debt will
    be settled.

    December 5, 2008 10:09 am at 10:09 am |

    according to oprah, obama is greater than God. So, why does he need money?

    December 5, 2008 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  12. Biff


    every dime of contributions has to be public already.

    December 5, 2008 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  13. Justin

    It was brilliant campaign move President Obama. Now lets fix the economy and end this war.

    December 5, 2008 10:10 am at 10:10 am |

    Thats all MCCAIN??? 84 MILLION?? and Thank Goodness that was it, because i hate to see how much Palin would have spent on her Clothes!

    December 5, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  15. Carl from MI

    Donating to the Obama campaign and other Dem campaigns was a good investment and a small price to pay to remove Republicans from the White House and from the House and Senate.

    If only I had more money to give in order to completely remove the Republican Culture of Corruption that has plagued our nation's government for the past decade!!! Republicans have become a cancer in our Government and need to all be surgically removed!!

    To all you evangelicals who 'prayed to God' for Republican candidates to win this election... I guess God now likes Democrats more than Republicans. I guess also God wasn't too happy with your party for that whole 'pray for rain' gig you guys did for the Dem's convention.

    Republicans... go forth and sit in judgment of yourselves!!

    December 5, 2008 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  16. CanIcallyouJoe

    And the Republican smears of "public trickery" and "lies" to get campaign funds start in 3....2......1.....
    Tango Dancer at 9:30am
    "I'm not offended or irritated since I support the cause, but what is to become of unspent campaign funds that still reside in the Obama bank?"

    Federal Law states that campaign funds left over from one election can either be saved and stored to use for the next election, or given to a charity. He is not doing anything illegal by having money in his campaign fund. Still, thanks for caring enough to donate!

    December 5, 2008 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  17. Greg Pottstown, Pa.

    the Obama campaign reported spending over $100 million during the final few weeks leading up to the November 4 election,

    And we are worried about Palin receiving 150k in cloths over two months.
    Is this sexism or are dems just hypocrites.

    December 5, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  18. Zee

    He needs money for the inauguration since he's not accepting money from lobbyists.

    December 5, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  19. Ephy

    Let me tell ya:
    Obama is a great man.

    December 5, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  20. Sheryl

    And it paid off,I love it!!!!!

    December 5, 2008 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  21. Michelle

    TangoDancer, I think with campaign finance laws he can't just give that money to Hillary Clinton. He can't even use it for his transition. He can save it and use it in 2012 for his reelection campaign.

    December 5, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  22. Wisconsin Vet

    Before it becomes a rumor..He cannot keep the money for himself by law. But it can held for his next campain or for donations. Not even for his inag. on 1/20.

    But trust it is in good hands....

    December 5, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  23. A


    December 5, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  24. soldiersmom

    i very curious to know where all that money came from.

    December 5, 2008 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  25. RJ

    Then stop asking for money from people. Pay off Hilary's debt since she is ur employee. Why would any obama supporter want to pay off Hilary's debt to the bigot Mark Penn's debt.? We all read his comments.

    December 5, 2008 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
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