- The Washington Times - Monday, August 6, 2012

Erasing all doubts about his fundraising abilities, Mitt Romney on Monday announced that he and his allies raked in $100 million for the second straight month, again topping President Obama and handing the Republican a much-needed public relations boost as he prepares to accept his party’s presidential nomination this month.

As recently as January, when the candidate was in the middle of a bruising primary, Mr. Romney’s fundraising was giving Republicans pause. But since acquiring enough nomination delegates, the former Massachusetts governor has been unstoppable.

In July, the Romney campaign, the Republican National Committee and a related joint fundraising operation raised a combined $101.3 million, besting Mr. Obama and the Democratic National Committee’s $75 million.

The latest fundraising numbers have buried the idea that Mr. Obama, whose 2008 fundraising shattered records, would be able to swamp Republicans the way he did Sen. John McCain in 2008 or President Clinton did to Republican Bob Dole in 1996.

In fact, Democrats now fear being the ones spent out of contention.

“The reality is simple: If Mitt can bury us under a wave of corporate special interest cash, we will lose in November,” Robby Mook, executive director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, wrote in a Monday fundraising missive.

Obama campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki said they have long expected to be outraised, but they are “on target and where we need to be” in their own fundraising.

“We know they may have more resources on the air, but we have a message that we think — and a plan that we think is going to translate better for middle-class voters and people who are deciding in November who they want to support,” she said in a briefing aboard Air Force One as Mr. Obama jetted to a fundraiser in Connecticut.

Closing the gap

Also Monday, polling from Gallup found 9 percent of voters who backed Mr. Obama in 2008 are switching sides to vote for Mr. Romney, while 5 percent of Mr. McCain’s 2008 supporters are switching to Mr. Obama.

The results showed a slow siphoning of support away from the president, though not enough to be fatal to his re-election chances, pollsters said.

Mr. Romney is counting on the Republican war chest to help sway more voters.

In the chase for donations, Mr. Romney’s July total was down slightly from the $106 million he raised in June.

“The fact that there was a decline could be worrisome,” said Bill Allison, editorial director at the nonpartisan Sunlight Foundation. “Obama started this fundraising back in 2011, and now he’s at the final stretch. Romney has to be on this incredible breakneck sprint to have parity.”

Romney’s makeover

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