April 21st, 2008
01:21 PM ET
14 years ago

Clinton's primary campaign begins April in debt

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/21/art.clintondebt.ap.jpg caption="Hillary Clinton began the month with $10 million in debt."](CNN) - Hillary Clinton began one of the most crucial stretches of her presidential campaign in debt, newly disclosed financial reports show.

According to campaign reports filed with the Federal Election Commission over the weekend, the New York senator began the month of April with close to $32 million cash-on hand. But only $9 million of that total are funds that are able to be spent in the primary races. The report also showed Clinton owes more than $10 million, meaning the Democratic presidential candidate was in the red even before she heavily stepped up television advertising in Pennsylvania.

"The numbers are what they are," Clinton adviser Howard Wolfson said on a conference call with reporters. "The money continues to come in strongly. We had a very good month last month of fundraising…we are continuing to have a good month this month."

We will of course be honoring the debt in the coming weeks and months," he also said.

The newly released reports offer the clearest picture to date of just how much of an advantage Barack Obama holds over Clinton heading into the final stretch of the prolonged Democratic race for the White House.

According to the reports, he began the month with over $42 million to spend during the presidential primaries and only carried around $650,000 in debt. Obama has $52 million cash on hand overall.

As has already been disclosed by both campaigns, Obama more than doubled what Clinton raised in the month of March: $41 million to her $20 million. The Illinois senator's stunning haul brings his presidential fundraising total to date to $235 million - $60 million more than what Clinton has raised in the same time period.

John McCain lagged both Democrats in March fundraising - pulling in $15 million in that time period. He began the month with $11.6 million cash-on-hand and, a debt of just over $700,000. He's raised a total of about $75 million.

The report also shows he gave back nearly $3 million from donors for his general election campaign. This move could indicate he is setting the stage to receive public financing for his campaign - an option that will infuse the Arizona senator with $84 million.

(12:45 p.m.: Updates with Wolfson comments)

soundoff (773 Responses)
  1. justobserve

    That's why you judge a candidate based on their handling of their own campaign, or their lies and spins, or look at their tax returns to see where the money comes from, what the husband does while the wife says the opposite, what are their own records, not someone else's,...
    If you believe people who have acting talent such as the Clintons, you will get years of chaos, fightings just like the Clintons ' years in the WH. Remember the stock market crash in 2000? They didn't tell you that.

    April 21, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  2. jr.

    Daer Americans if you are upset about gas priceses then vote for Hillary. Obama he voted for the oil pompanies very unexpireance.

    April 21, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  3. Anonymous

    People are savvy with money. They don't put their hard earned money into a sinking ship. Nothing can speak clearer than this. She will win PA, no doubt but will go out of steam soon after.

    If the majority of American people really believe that she is such a brilliant presidential material, why don't they line up behind her campain and donate their money?

    April 21, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  4. Bitter Voter

    I think this about says it all.......

    April 21, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  5. C

    This is very shocking news. You've got to wonder out loud, "how can this be?" She is doomed!

    April 21, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  6. dan-al

    broke i hope not for tax return records talks, but who got the edge understood the irag war or did not, accepted republicans are better at talking to americans or knows can take on reps as per say,democrats will win no fear we got strength of character, relgion,economics,and love of the country. Go Obama

    April 21, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  7. Sante



    April 21, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  8. Carolyn

    If Hillary "were" to become President, our Country would be in the "RED" another 4 years. This women can't manage her campaign which is small.... how in the world she think she's qualified to manage the country debt. She doesn't have a clue about money managing. Come on Hillary support get a grip. A vote for Hillary is another 4 years of Bush.

    Obama for President!

    April 21, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  9. SH

    George Sorros ans his buddies can pour in all the cash they have in hand but they won't be able to put Obama into the White House. It is John McCain who will WIN. So, Obama supporters spend all you your money campaiging for a loser in November. At the end of the election, ask yourself – "where did my money go?"

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  10. SayNoToHillaryBillaryCheslaryClintrous

    Bill Clinton will say to Hillary next week. Give me a break hillary we are out of cash, we are not going to dip in to our 109M if the stupid supporters stop contributing.

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  11. rj

    JCL Kentucky....i wish they would have intelligence tests before people could post on here. Just because he has debt doesn't mean he isn't able to pay it. Most people have debt and they pay it off. But when you have 10 million in debt and 9 million in cash....you're short. he has 650,000 in debt and 52 million in cash. the unfortunate thing is that its people like you who have no clue who are keeping her in the race.

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  12. Over the Hill!!!

    Obama 08' &12!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  13. Chris

    After the 109 million I think she can afford it. Dreams are expensive, especially when you have very heavy baggage.

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  14. BarryManilow

    What can Hillary do without the under-educated, white rural population ? Sad.

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  15. Cath Done

    Americans, you are so lucky! You have the opportunity to be the leaders for real change and to make an impact, this time for the better, on our world.

    We Canadians have to continue with old war mongering, cold fish government!

    Save our world! Please, no more Bush or Clinton! Obama for our world!

    Hopeful Canadian!

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  16. WB

    Hillary Clinton: Ready on day one to blow all your money.

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  17. lucyna

    If Hillary can't manage the money, how she can manage the country?

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  18. Mike, Iowa

    TIme for Bill to go on a big speaking tour.... gotta raise some big cash fast!

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  19. Smart budgeting now!

    Elect Obama! Oprah will singlehandedly will bail us out of our national debt!!!!

    April 21, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  20. SaneTexan

    More CNN slant for Obama...LOL. He is still going to lose PA after spending all that money. BTW...you Obama supporters...Obama can't win either...it's going to be up the Super Delegates to decide. In the general election he will LOSE!
    Anyone but Obama in 08!

    April 21, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  21. Johnny


    i guess bill wishes he could rent the lincoln bedroom again to help you....

    the math after tomorrow will show with no doubt that Hillary cannot win unless she cheats....

    drop out!

    April 21, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  22. Richard Rodriguez Rivera

    They Call Obama, elitist. in my lifetime I hve never known a poor man beene elitist. This term is strictly reserved for those with money power. This been said, I cannot imagine how can 4 mill. earnings conjunctly against, $100+,mills.,$109+mill., and the super $$$$$$mills of Mitt Romney, the true elitists, can call Obama, that?
    I imagine the saying, "the best defense, is an overwhelming attack", that hols even trueer, coming from those who have the most money,plus the fact of been white, can't stand to loose over a gray (born to mixracial parents) candidate. Shame on all of them, period.

    April 21, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  23. Susan / PA

    It was once said......

    To know a candidate, is to know how they run their campaign.

    Running a 10,000,000$ debt..is a telling toll

    Hillary go home...and home isnt Scranton either!!!!

    vote OBAMA 08

    April 21, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  24. Thanh

    Don't try to spin this as poor management because that's just stupid. She's trying to beat someone spending 4x as much as she is. Of course she's going to go in the red to gain enough influence to win. Obama has a really established constituency across the country. It's going to take a lot of spending to be able to reach those voters and get them to change their minds.

    April 21, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  25. louie

    its funny how Hillary is winning in states that Obama spent 2 to 1 on TV ads and in pa spent 4 to 1 and i wonder if he ever fed the homeless probably not because Oprah and Ted Kennedy would not approve of that kinda helpfulness since thats were Hussain is getting all of his blood money......that he is so easily spending to try to get a upset with TV ads over Hillary Clinton.......word of advice Hussain this is Clinton Country not Barack Hussain Obama land.......

    April 21, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
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