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Romney, the money-making machine

by Adam Russett on July 6, 2011

An underwhelmed Republican party base is scrutinizing the available candidates – from former Godfather's pizza CEO Herman Cain to former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich – and they've already decided to begin voting with their pocketbooks. 

And who's benefiting the most? Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who has raised an astonishing amount of money compared to his peers. Romney raised $10.25 million in just one day after getting his wealthy backers to come together and call other potential donors.

"This is a big kickoff for us, for our fundraising effort. It’s kind of a celebration," Romney said in a brief town-hall-style broadcast on Facebook "It's important to me that we get that started, the ball rolling today."

The Associated Press speculates that he is waiting until he has enough fundraising clout to far outpace other contenders before he goes on the offensive. Currently, much of his campaign has focused on private meetings, rather than public addresses.

This could prove to be a crucial step in challenging President Barack Obama, who raised a hefty sum during 2008 and may break the $1 billion mark during his reelection campaign.

How are the other presidential hopefuls doing? Their combined fortunes have trouble meeting Romney's single-day fundraiser. Tim Pawlenty has raised $4.2 million over a three-month period, which could raise doubts over the viability of his bid, according to The Washington Post.

Newt Gingrich has fared even worse – Politico reports that his campaign is around a million dollars in debt and Gingrich ended June with just $225,000 in the bank. Still, many of his supporters hope that Gingrich will rebound later this year.

"We've been weathering a storm and the ship is starting to right itself," campaign press secretary R.C. Hammond told the news source. "The infusion of professionals volunteering their time and talent to the campaign is further proof we are weathering the storm and forging on."

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