The election is a week away, and Barack Obama is leading nationally. While the polls indicate a strong lead, I think the election will be a lot closer than the polls indicate. John McCain still has a slim chance of pulling this out.
The McCain campaign has been mismanaged from the start, but one item that comes up over and over again in this election is money. Barack Obama has a huge money advantage over John McCain. Pundits think that the Obama campaign will have a dramatic change on how political campaigns are run in the future.
Obama’s focus of small internet based donations is not a new tactic, the Dean campaign revolutionized Internet campaigning in 2004, and Obama’s people built upon that success in 2008. The Republicans foolishly continued to focus on max donations from wealthy people.
John McCain likes to bring up Obama’s refusal to accept federal funds, and I disagreed with Obama’s reversal, but the Obama financing revolution has nothing to do with his refusal of federal money. The real story is Obama’s ability to pull in first time donors.
Before this election, almost nobody I knew donated to political campaigns. The amount of people I know who have donated to Obama’s campaign is staggering. Obama’s message has really resonated with people, and the American people realize the importance of this election. The tough primary fight with Senator Clinton aided Obama’s general election effort by getting exposure in every state.
Obama’s ability to raise funds is a testament to his message. The American people have spoken in mass with their wallets. Its not the “elites” who are empowering the Obama campaign, its middle class folks giving small donations.