Politics

              President Barack Obama pauses as he is applauded during his speech at a fundraising event at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas, Tuesday, July 17, 2012. Obama is spending the day fundraising in Texas. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
              President Barack Obama pauses as he is applauded during his speech at a fundraising event at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas, Tuesday, July 17, 2012. Obama is spending the day fundraising in Texas. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)   

Obama announces record September donations of $181 million

Photo of Neil Munro
Neil Munro
White House Correspondent

President Barack Obama’s campaign raised an eye-popping $181 million in September, belying months of claims that he is being out-raised by his challenger, Mitt Romney.

“We … raised $181 million in September from 1.8 million Americans — more than 567,000 of whom gave for the first time,” said a 10.24 A.M. email from the campaign.

The funds were raised by both Obama’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee

The news will be a morale-booster for Democratic partisans, who were shocked by Obama’s stunning defeat in the first presidential debate on Wednesday night. Two mini-polls showed that even many Democrats gave the victory to Romney.

In response, Obama’s team announced they will renew their assault on Romney’s character. The new funds will help the campaign run additional advertising during the final month before the election.

Romney is expected to announce his September donations on Oct 6.

Obama’s record September suggests his team will raise more than $1 billion for the campaign by November.

That haul does not included additional spending by so-called super PACs, unions and various advocacy groups, such as Planned Parenthood.

At the end of April, Obama’s career-total fundraising had reached $1,017,892,305.

Since then, he has raised several hundred million dollars for his 2012 campaign, pushing him closer to a lifetime take of roughly $1.6 billion.

Much of the money comes from wealthy donors, but Democrats are trying to highlight small donations by middle-income and poor Americans.

“We … surpassed 10 million donations so far in 2012 to the campaign and the Democratic Party — a historic record for grassroots politics,” said the email from campaign manager Jim Messina.

The email included claimed testimonials from Obama supporters.

“$15 is a special pizza dinner at our local pizza stop (Poppi’s in Wynnewood). … I refuse to allow new laws to stop us/me from being A PART of this campaign… I still want to believe I can play a part,” said “Sandy from Pennsylvania,” according to the message.

The fundraising announcement comes a day after Obama celebrated the decline in the unemployment rate to under 8 percent for the first time in his presidency.

Although only 114,000 new jobs were reported by employers — which is not even enough to keep up with the flow of new graduates and immigrants — the unemployment rate fell from 8.1 percent to 7.8 percent because so many people left the workforce, and because a survey of households showed a spike in part-time employment.

That 7.8 percent number was touted by establishment media, including the New York Times and the Washington Post, whose front page declared, “Unemployment dips to 7.8%, a four-year low.”

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