Thursday, September 25, 2008

Keeping Up The Burn Rate

Obama is going to have to raise a lot of money to maintain his required burn rate. His efforts should keep the television advertising business out of recession for a few more months.

Democrat Barack Obama’s campaign has budgeted $39 million to win Florida, and that’s just one of several “robust” set asides for swing states, campaign manager David Plouffe told supporters in a fundraising appeal this month.

That figure alone explains why Barack Obama decided to forgo taxpayer money for his general election campaign.

Simply put: His strategy for winning requires a bigger budget than public money would allow.

The Sunshine State strategic plan alone would have consumed nearly half of the $85 million allotted for the general election by the Federal Election Commission.

“This shows you the sheer magnitude of what we are trying to accomplish,” said Plouffe. “We are spending more money and more time on the grass roots than any presidential campaign in history.”
It’s a strategy, however, that has many other Democrats worrying.

"They’ve had an experience where every time they had a problem, people would donate money,” said one Democratic insider. Noting that some of Obama’s key primary victories came after he dramatically outspent former rival Hillary Rodham Clinton, the insider asked: “What if they don’t outspend John McCain in Ohio, Michigan and Virginia?
Yep. What if they don't? And it is not just a matter of outspending. He has to do it by a large margin, because as his primary race against Hillary proved, he had to spend a lot more dollars per vote than Hillary did.

Lets look at some battle ground states and their electoral votes. And assume it will take money proportional to the electoral votes (very roughly) to win a state.

CO - 09 $13
OH - 20 $29
FL - 27 $39
PA - 21 $30
MI - 17 $24
VA - 13 $18

That is $150 million (roughly) to win those 6 states. That means he has to raise about $75 million a month just to win those states. If his calculations are correct. In August he only raised $66 million. Given other states he has to spend in and campaign expenses I'd say he has a problem. And that does not even count providing any money to down ticket races.

Look at it another way. He outspent Hillary by 3 to 1 or more in a number of states and still lost to her. No wonder why he has to rally by day and fund raise by night. If he maintains a pace like that he is going to be very tired by the last debate. And tired people make a lot of mistakes.

How is McCain dealing with the fundraising problem? He has decided to Leave The Money and Get The Votes. In other words he and Palin will be campaigning and doing very little fund raising. They will be rested and refreshed for the debates.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

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