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. Brown

    Good. She's broke. Now get out.

    Obama 08

    April 21, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  2. Dallas, TX

    Ahh Yes, but she has the experience to run the country!!! What a joke...Obama 2008!!!

    April 21, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  3. Frank (Cleveland)

    In an election where the Issue of Ecomony is #1...do you want a candidate who cannot manage the economy of her own campain?

    Were she the nomonie, the republicans will use this to crusify her in the general election campaign

    Obama, The clear choice.

    April 21, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  4. TF

    Yes, yes, yes!!!

    If she can't control the money for a campaign how can she balance our budget!! Great work Hillary, I'm glad we have another option. Now we know why she was pumping her web site during the debate. It felt like an infomercial when she was taking.

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  5. Penelope

    If Clinton cannot pay her debts, small firms and all those other bills, how can she turn around the US economy! If Clinton cannot manage her campaign resources, how can she organize the national resources! Wake up America!!!

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  6. Gary Mitchell

    Hillary you can't buy the Whitehouse. No amount of money can overcome your defective dislexic campaign. Will there be a surprise in Pennsylvania? Will all your chickens come home to roost? Obama's mantra is "yes we can" and he calls on us to stand up and become part of the process and part of the solution. Hillary speaks about being the solution candidate while being the shining example of the problem. A Cancer can't cure cancer.

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  7. Dee

    The closest either of these candidates have to executive experience is these campaigns.

    If you can't run a campaign, you probably can't handle the whole country's finances!!

    Come on..."experience"....???

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  8. PA voter

    3,2,1... and here come the comments from obamabots that she can't run a campaign

    well here is my message to them: Hillary carries BLUE COLLAR voters because they cannot afford to screw around with idealistic messages of 'hope'...they need REAL solutions and Clinton provides them

    Unfortunately, her base (blue collar voters) do not have the big bucks to throw at her campaign...

    He may outspend her 4:1 like in Ohio ..but she will still win! People of PA need a CLINTON to turn this economy around!!!!!!!!

    HILLARY 08!!!!!!!!

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  9. Are you serious?


    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  10. Tampa Voter

    The TRUTH leaks out. And there is more to come, you can bet on that. The media makes her seem like she's doing better than she actually is. And all the spin creates more of a smoke screen. Don't be fooled again in 2008. Obama has been our best choice since the beginning. He is the reason for record voter turnout and WE all know it.

    Obama 08

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  11. pa voter

    maybe she doesn't have the backing of the lobiest like obama does. Why don't all you obama freaks look into that!!!think about it fools before its too late. instead of listening to him, try reading what he says. It makes a differece. You won't like him so much. You will see what many of us have seen all along. He sounds good, but says nothing.

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  12. Charlie from Raleigh

    Experience speaks volumes!!! You have to be kidding. This is the second time within 6 months. First you “loan” your campaign 5 million to prevent going into debt. Now this… This report needs to be shown on all the major news networks. But instead we’ll see more stuff about her Bosnia trip and hunt for “Where in the World is Obama’s lapel pin”. Nonsense and garbage. And here we have an individual that can’t even keep her campaign finances together until Nov.

    Men lie… Woman lie….Numbers Don’t

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  13. Tamika

    Knowing full well in advance that she could not afford to campaign there.. she went ahead anyhow.. this is how she will run our country..previews certainly shows us as much

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  14. Mickie in PA

    I hope this shows all of her followers that have blinders on that she is not the fiscally sound candidate she pretends to be. After all, she voted right along with Bush on all the deficits we face now, so why would she change if she was elected and had a blank check?

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  15. Jude

    Okay you Clintonites…If you haven't jump ship it seems like this is the right time to do so because your money is going down the drain!!! I don't think a candidate who can't manage her own campaign fund is good for President on Day 1. Just realize the inevitable and join the Obama train!!!!

    "Resistance is futile"

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  16. natahan.lee@virgin.net

    Oh! No!

    She can't manage her own finanaces, or campaign team.

    And yet people want her to manage the Country.

    Oh Dear!

    April 21, 2008 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  17. Cheryl L. Swaim

    Please, let Obama spend of his money to help the needy. There are Americans who can't afford life-saving medicine and health care, who are losing their homes, who are hungry. There are still Americans who suffer from Katrina and other disasters. And the list goes on. I think Obama is sick to spend so much money negatively attacking his opponents. Tell him to take a hip-hopping hike.
    Cheryl in Annapolis

    April 21, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  18. Len

    DAN......Who are the 2 fat billionaires for Obama??????

    April 21, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  19. Carolyn

    Spending more than you have...sounds like George Bush!

    April 21, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  20. Peter in Oregon

    How can we expect her to turn around our economy and bring us out of debt if she can't even manage the debt of her campaign? A campaign that has accepted a lot of its finances from lobbyists.

    Obama '08

    April 21, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  21. sky

    How they run their campaign is EXACTLY how they will run this country....one is successful and one is already in debt.

    April 21, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  22. Lynn

    I'll donate for the 5th time today.

    April 21, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  23. itoldya

    everyone keep talking about how much Obama is spending.... News Flash.... HE CAN SPEND TWICE AS MUCH AS HER BECAUSE HE HAS TWICE AS MANY SUPPORTER... duh!... IF SHE HAD THAT KIND OF MONEY COMING IN SHE WOULD SPEND IT TOO

    April 21, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  24. Amy OFlaherty Reno, NV

    How do you buy an election when you've won more states, more delegates AND are ahead in the popular vote? I voted for Obama in my caucus and nobody paid me. Dumb argument.

    April 21, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  25. g-Mack

    It goes to show you that Barack Obama ,are the peoples choice. When it comes to Americans giving there money in a tough economy.They give to those they feel deserve it. So the money speaks for itself.

    April 21, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
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