Romney, Perry Lower Fundraising Expectations as Quarter Ends

As Friday night marked the end of the third quarter, campaigns of frontrunners Mitt Romney and Rick Perry played down expectations for their fundraising hauls.

A person close to the Romney campaign told Bloomberg that between $13 million and $14 million was anticipated in the third quarter.

Romney’s campaign spokesman Ryan Williams was quoted as saying that the total was expected to be “considerably less” than the $18.2 million haul from the previous quarter.

According to a Sept. 24 Fox News poll, Romney was the frontrunner with 23 percent of voters supporting him as the Republican presidential nominee. However, Perry, who got second place with 19 percent support in the poll, is expected to lead in the fundraising totals.

Since Perry is the governor of the large state of Texas, chair of a former Republican Governors Association, and a new candidate, “we suspect he will lead the Republican field in fundraising for this quarter,” Williams added. Perry has been in the race for only six weeks.

Perry’s campaign anticipates taking in at least $10 million, according to an aide. However, another aide told Bloomberg that the first $10 million was raised fairly easily, mostly from Texas. Perry’s supporters were earlier hoping to raise $20 million.

Romney and Perry are not only looking at each other, but they are also competing against New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who is yet to announce his run. It is possible that some key donors might have refrained from giving money to another candidate in anticipation of Christie’s expected entry into the fray.

Texas Rep. Ron Paul has raised over $5 million in this quarter, half a million more than the previous quarter, according to Campaign Chairman Jesse Benton.

While former Godfather Pizza CEO Herman Cain’s campaign didn’t specify how much it expected to raise, his tweet Friday showed enthusiasm. It reads: “best fundraising week....ever! THANK YOU! Let’s finish Q3 strong!”

In the latest Fox poll, Cain stood third with the support of 17 percent of voters – up from six percent in an August poll.

The campaigns are required to file their fundraising and spending reports to the Federal Election Commission only after Oct. 15. Apart from showing how long candidates can sustain their campaigns, fundraising figures also reflect support among voters.

Meanwhile, President Barack Obama also appealed to donors Friday night. Addressing a group of around 60 guests who bought tickets ranging from $10,000 to $35,800 each to attend a campaign event at a private home in Washington, Obama said Washington was yet to be changed.

“And we still have work to do to make sure that this town is working on behalf of ordinary folks so that they can start once again believing in the American dream,” said Obama. “Because people have lost confidence in the capacity of folks to look out for them, as opposed to look out for themselves or their most powerful patrons. And that’s what 2012’s all about.”

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