Mitt Romney's campaign continued its strong fundraising streak today, announcing it had brought in $100 million last month, beating already high expectations. The campaign outraised President Obama in April and May, and while we don’t yet know how well Obama did in June, Romney’s haul is formidable. Part of Romney’s fundraising prowess came from a boost after the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Affordable Care Act, in which the Republican pulled in $5.5 million for one of his best fundraising days so far. Democrats also reportedly saw bumps after the decision as well, though the Obama campaign didn't provide a specific number.
Like Obama, Romney has devoted much of his time recently to fundraising, holding few public campaign events or town halls. Unlike Obama, the presumed GOP nominee relies heavily on deep-pocketed, high-dollar donors. Last week, he held a $50,000-a-head fundraiser with Donald Trump at the home of Martin Zweig, a New York financier. It’s one of the most expensive houses in the world, valued at $70 million in 2004. The weekend before that, he held a massive private retreat at a swank Utah resort where big donors could rub shoulders with GOP notables. (An event to be hosted by disgraced former Barclay's CEO Robert Diamond had to be canceled earlier this week.)
Romney's haul is big, but not unheard of. Obama raised a record $150 million in one month during the 2008 election. Still, it will likely worry some Democrats.
The eye-popping figure also underscore the importance of not losing sight of the campaigns proper in this age of super PACs. While outside groups may end up trumping the spending of the candidates themselves, it won’t be by much. And ultimately, the “hard money” given to campaigns goes a lot further per dollar than the “soft money” given to outside groups. Republicans were expected to have the advantage in outside money -- despite efforts by the National Journal today to mislead otherwise -- but Obama could be in real trouble if he’s outspent in both hard and soft money.