WSJ with some reporting from inside the Clinton campaign:
Inside her campaign, Sen. Clinton isn’t asking for advice, forcing advisers to hold off discussions on what she wants from the process if she loses — from dealing with campaign debt, to her role in an Obama bid for the White House. “The campaign has broken down to those who drink the Kool-Aid that Hillary can still win, and those who don’t, and are considering their options,” one operative said.
Campaign chairman Terry McAuliffe says he has assured Sen. Clinton that she will have funds to compete through June 3, adding that he will worry about any campaign debt after that. “We’re still getting tens of thousands of contributors online, who love Hillary’s fight,” Mr. McAuliffe said.
Sen. Clinton’s campaign is racking up large debts, though. The campaign disclosed $12.6 million in debt at the end of March, not including a personal loan of $5 million from Sen. Clinton herself. One week ago, officials said the candidate had lent her campaign an additional $6.4 million and put total debt at $20 million.
Were the April fund-raising numbers released and I missed it? Or is the Obama campaign holding on to their numbers in case there is a bad news day they need to massage (something they have done very well, so far- the Edwards endorsement after WV was a perfect example).
Speaking of which, for those of you who are so inclined:
Does anyone know the intricacies of campaign financing? At what point would it be better to hold off from donating so that you can spend your surplus cash on donations that can be used in the general?
If I were the Obama campaign, I’d be busy soliciting donations for the general election at this point. There’s absolutely no need to raise any more cash for the primary at this point, given that the last votes will be cast in 2 weeks.
At no point? The nominee can still use his primary money in the general:
You can give $2.3k in the primary and $2.3k in the general. This means that if you donate any money now below the first $2.3k level, Obama probably just throws it on the pile along with the rest of his campaign contributions. If you’ve already donated $2.3k, any additional funds he raises will go into his general election coffer, but can’t be spent until – presumably, but correct me if I’m wrong – he officially secures the nomination.
The upshot of all of this is that he is certainly free to campaign with his primary money as he is still technically in the primary. That means campaign stops and bumper sticker printings and staffer fees can come out of his primary budget rather than his general election budget. He can – effectively – double the cap by which he raises money, until he actually takes the nomination.
Since few, if any, of us will be donating over $2.3k to him any time soon, this is a generally unimportant to the public at large. Since most of his contributions have been from small sub-$1000 donors, this actually means little to Obama as well. $100 in his primary fund isn’t going to be treated any differently than $100 in his general election fund unless you’ve already maxed out.
It all rolls over
On the plus side, Hillary picks up another BFF
Anybody who doesn’t understand how Republican lite she has become has their head up their ass. I am sure that is sexist somehow, but I am beyond caring
Primary money can be used up to the convention and if I’m not wrong, then transfered to the general election. General election money can’t be spent until after the convention.
I doubt Obama wants to stay off the air until after the convention, so he’s going to continue to raise primary money.
“[S]he has…ass. I am sure…sexist.”
How dare you treat Hillary like a piece of meat. Oh well, at least you admit your misogyny.
Dennis - SGMM
…and spending money that she doesn’t have on something that she can’t win. Sounds more like the current occupant of the White House than a future one.
It’s complicated. Basically, you can donate up to $2300 for the primary, and up to $2300 for the general if you are an individual. Those are separate donations. (This isn’t legal advice — consult with an attorney if you want advice on this area. If you’re giving this much money to a campaign, you should probably consider doing just that, as there are other regulations which can apply.)
The actual regulations on the campaigns themselves are even more complicated. They can’t use primary money to campaign for the general, but they can use it to organize the convention, or to build their state by state organizations in preparation for the general. Although those actions can look a lot like campaigning, since they do involve creating news about a candidate, and can certainly involve trips to various states and making news about the candidate, they are not, technically, campaigning.
That’s why we have lawyers.
What if Hill and Bill never come to their senses? What if they refuse to end the campaign even after Obama racks up enough pledged and super delegates to clinch the nomination? What if they insist on taking it all the way to a floor fight at the convention? In the past a losing candidate who tried to do that would just be ignored by the media and see their fundraising dry up. But Hillary can’t be ignored and she and Bill can probably raise just enough cash to keep limping on. So, barring a mass public resignation by senior campaign staff…I don’t think there’s any objective reality that could force the Clintons to throw in the towel. So, what if they don’t?
Much like Bush and Iraq, there still seems to be an idea that eventually Hillary will have to do what is reasonable. But in the 90s she and Bill learned very well the lesson that you can be as unreasonable as you want until someone stops you and, right now, the only thing that would actually stop the Clintons is a convention vote.
Dennis - SGMM
No “What if…?” about it. And if they lose the floor fight Hillary will go on campaigning as the “legitimate” Democratic nominee. She’s gone ’round the bend.
Not just her, but Bill too. He’s desperate to get back in the White House, and by all accounts he despises Barack, so he’s never going to stop egging her on.
As Michelle Bernard said on Hardball, ‘Hillary Clinton is becoming the Ron Paul of Democratic party’.
Say no more.
Hillary will no longer be in the race on June 10th.
She will probably stay in until early June. She may hope that the RBC will choose to seat Michigan and Florida and that this would change the game. It won’t. The SDs have clearly made their choice and after tomorrow they will most likely start to endorse en masse.
I suspect that after today Obama will release all pending SD endorsements. He will do so in order to make the argument compelling and to mitigate the risk of FL and MI changing the game.
If you want to see real crazy watch what happens to the Hillary blogs when the SDs end the contest.
I remember speculation that, if Edwards secured the nomination, the party might have to have a pre-convention confab to formally vote him in as nominee before August, given that he’d be broke until then, due to his taking matching funds from the FEC. Is it possible the DNC could do this sort of thing in, say, mid-June to get this thing over with? Could they possibly use the threat of such a thing to get Clinton to bow out herself?
The problem for Clinton is if she doesn’t pay off her personal loans, I think of 20 mil, by the convention, she can’t recoup that money. Pretty good reason to stick around a while longer.
Here’s the link for that’
” ‘Hillary Clinton is becoming the Ron Paul of Democratic party’.”
No, she’s the new Joe Lieberman.
I’m not on in the finance group so I don’t know the particulars, but an Obama organization I volunteer for is kicking off our fundraising for the general at an event in NYC tomorrow.
The leadership works closely with the campaign itself, so I’d guess most of the fundraising is taking that turn (if it hasn’t already).
Something tells me their mouths wrote a bunch of checks their asses can’t cash if they don’t get the nomination for Hillary.
Change of subject: I just saw some very bad news via digby. Ted Kennedy has a malignant brain tumor.
Mark Penn is owed a lot of money. Also,
Now isn’t that interesting? There is something so pathetic about the Clintons at this point. I have read that Bill Clinton has a lot of unresolved issues over his “legacy,” but this is getting kind of ridiculous. I mean, I have unresolved issues over the boyfriend I had in graduate school, but I somehow managed to move on with my life.
Bill has an ego, always has and always will. He and Hillary both view themselves as the saviors of the democratic party therefore they are somehow owed this. Further, if there is a nominee that poses any threat whatsoever to that legacy then they must be destroyed (and it probably would have been like that until Bill died).
Hillary, our Joan D’Arc!
March fundraising numbers come out tonight (have to file with FEC by midnight).
Clinton’s campaign is saying March was their 3rd best month, so somewhere between $15 and $25 million. But she had something like $20 million in debt going into March and spends $1 million or so per day, so I can’t believe the final numbers are going to be very good for her. And it seems they could only have gotten worse in May.
Sorry, my previous comment should reference April fundraising numbers, not March.
Well the case could be made that Hillary’s belief that everyone is out to get her is related to schizophrenia like Joan Of Arc had….