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. Sha-vone in NC

    This is certainly a good first impression as to how these candidates handle large amounts of money. This is another factor that we all should consider....

    April 21, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  2. Miguel

    Kind of gives you some insight in how she would mismanage the country if given the opportunity.


    April 21, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  3. honkey white guy from cali

    Well I would like to know how on top of everything else she thinks. She has a chance in _ell! I wonder how much more she has loaded her campaign that we don't know about! that % million was not the only loan!

    Go Obama 08 Yes We Can

    April 21, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  4. Darlene Pasko McKeesport, PA

    So Hillary gets an endorsement from the Pittsburgh Tribune Review. The same ultra right wing, Richard Scaife-owned publication that lead the charge against the Clintons in the 90's. Gee, that's a surprise isn't it? The fix is in, people.

    April 21, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  5. Eric

    People don't want to give money to a campaign that is in all essence, over.

    April 21, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  6. DemocracyNow2008

    Is this what we can expect with Hillary has President.
    She cannot even keep herself and her campaign out of dept.

    I will stick with Obama he can run a campaign by for and of the American people and not have dept.

    Thats the kind of President I want running this country.

    Clinton supporters say remember the good old years when Bill was President.
    They were not that good.
    Obama knows how to spend the money we the people donate to his website Clinton on the other hand mis-speaks and mis-spends the money she has.

    She cannot even pay her vendors and her campaign staff.

    Obama 08 Yes We Can

    April 21, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  7. Juro

    Where did it all go? Chippendales? Neiman Marcus? Pappadeaux?

    April 21, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  8. Steve

    Why is it that the government can be trillions of dollars in debt and nothing is done to them but if anyone else is in debt, you either have to pay the debt or go to jail...

    April 21, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  9. Independent, Butler PA

    I can send more money Hillary. Hold on lady hopefully help is on the way. I think you will win big in PA.

    April 21, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  10. Chris Banner

    That's not really good..... There are all kinds of signs for her to drop out but yet again she persists

    April 21, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  11. Tolga

    If Hillary cannot raise enough money, she will have to quit. If she has the money, she will stay until the convention. I am hoping that she'll quit soon (because of financial problems or because of a common sense).

    April 21, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  12. Carl Dupont

    I think she should drop out. She is wasting her time and money

    April 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  13. JeffRob


    If I lived in PA, this would affect my vote.

    April 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  14. Wayne

    Hillary. Drop out. With no chance to be the pledged delegate leader your candidacy has been reduced to bashing the Democratic nominee while McCain looks presidential.

    Right Wing Radio and the GOP are laughing at us. PA voters PLEASE. Be strategic. You are costing us the election.

    April 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  15. Anonymous

    Add SHE is going to manage an economy?

    April 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  16. Demhypocrisy

    Yes We Can! We will carbon copy George Bush's political machine of 2000. it's all about spending money.

    April 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  17. Jean

    I hope you eat her up Obama...Good For you, Keep up the good work

    April 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  18. Dee

    If she can't run a campaign, she surely can't run the country. This should be a clear indication of her "managerial" abilities. She has none.

    April 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  19. fred

    What happened to Obama's finance reform that he supported??? LMAO

    Orpha keeps handing those blacks the money to send to Obama!!!!
    She will soon find out that the election cannot be bought!!


    April 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  20. Let's get it right

    Drip, drip, drip, drip....

    April 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  21. Robert New York City & Miami, Florida

    Thanks for reporting. I'll send her my 4th contribution .

    April 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  22. Streetjustiz

    .......and the walls of Jericho came tumbling down.

    April 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  23. Ikebobo

    This shows where the people stand.

    Obama '08

    April 21, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  24. Josha College Station Texas

    Pay your debts Hillary! And drop out of the race please.

    April 21, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  25. Eddie

    It is amazing that this lady would just spend money she does not have to meet her agenda.Imagine what will happen if she was over the American budget.She spends as if she is bush,Scary!!!

    April 21, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
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