Money in politics – the 2012 US Presidential elections

Money in politics – the 2012 US Presidential elections

Washington : DC : USA | Sep 04, 2012 at 8:27 AM PDT
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Reports seem to indicate that busloads of students would be brought in to fill the seats in the 74,000-capcity Bank of America Stadium where the Democrats would declare Barack Obama as their candidate for the 2012 US Presidential elections.

This has been reported in of dated 3rd of September 2012.

The crowd would comprise College students from across North Carolina who would arrive at the venue in Charlotte along with members of the predominantly black churches in neighboring South Carolina.

There are apprehensions that the stadium might not fill up to capacity and there could be empty seats which would be counterproductive – hence, the emergency measures.

Any empty seat would be fodder to the idea-starved Romney camp because those would be shown as proof of waning voter enthusiasm for Obama.

In 2008 Barack Obama had accepted the Democratic nomination in front of a capacity crowd in the 84,000-seat stadium in Denver – any shortfall in this would send out negative signals.

At the Democrats convention, Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to speak as also senator John Kerry of Massachusetts.

What is left unsaid is how these ‘extras’ would be compensated – would greenbacks change hands, would there be free refreshments or booze or

Need for raising funds for campaigns -

In today’s world, everyone and everything is weighed in terms of money – what is a person worth and how much can he shell out are two questions whose answers determine the success or failure of a politician.

Here comes the importance of funds – every party must have the necessary money power to ensure that its candidate emerge victorious. This is probably one of the reasons of why the candidates set out to collect funds well in advance. They do not go about with begging bowls but do it in more sophisticated organized way through teams who are dedicated to the cause.

Another option exercised by many political parties is to rely on voluntary large scale contributions from Corporate Houses. Of course, in such cases, there are invisible strings attached.

Fund raising through dinners –

There was the $35,800 per plate dinner at Harvey Weinstein’s home on 7th August 2012 organized by Obama campaign managers.

And – the Romney $50,000 per plate fundraiser dinner in Jerusalem for which the Romney manages had not done their homework. The dinner had to be cancelled because the Romney campaign organizers had forgotten that the date selected was a day of mourning for Jews.

Donations from the masses -

Going by available figures - in 2008, Obama had reported 3 million unique campaign donors who had supported him in his bid for the White House. That has increased considerably in 2012 because it is reported that in 2012 nearly 2-million supporters have given $25 or less in aggregate while more than 1.4 million have given more than once this election cycle.

It seems the Obama campaign had collected 39% of its total funds from donors who gave $200 or less in aggregate. In contrast, Romney raised 15 percent of his funds from the same class of small-dollar donors.

This in itself is an indication that Obama connects better with the common man as compared to Romney.

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prabirghose is based in Nāshik, Maharashtra, India, and is an Anchor on Allvoices.
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