Romney rakes in record US$160m in June
WASHINGTON, USA (AFP) — Mitt Romney and his Republican fundraisers raked in US$106.1 million in June -- a new record for the 2012 presidential race, his campaign team announced yesterday.
Romney and the Republican National Committee now have US$160 million in cash on hand, the campaign said, as the candidate gears up for a fierce four-month White House battle against President Barack Obama.
The Obama team has yet to announce its fundraising totals for June, but the month may well be the second in a row in which Romney out-raised the incumbent.
Romney took in more than US$76 million in May, compared with more than US$60 million for Obama.
May was the first full month in which Romney emerged as the clear winner of a grueling Republican primary race, paving the way for him to step clear of party rivals and out-raise his Democratic rival for the first time.
June's figures showed Romney received more than 536,000 donations of less than US$250.
"This month's fundraising is a statement from voters that they want a change of direction in Washington," Romney Victory finance chairman Spencer Zwick said in a statement announcing the numbers.
"In the months to come, these resources will be crucial to highlighting the difference between President Obama's broken promises and Mitt Romney's plan to get America on the right track again."
Obama lags behind Romney when it comes to super-PACs, the independent political action committees which can raise and spend unlimited funds to support candidates, although they cannot directly fund a campaign.
Wealthy conservatives are said to be funneling huge sums into such outside groups that support Romney's agenda.
Despite the May-June likely fundraising advantage for Romney, his team has insisted it is Obama who is currently spending more on getting out his message.
In a memo dated Sunday, the Romney campaign said it has been outspent US$46.2 million to US$17.0 million on advertising since Romney won the Republican primary race in April.
That figure however does not include the money spent by super PACs on advertising.
The pro-Romney issues advocacy group Crossroads GPS announced Friday it had purchased a US$25 million ad blitz in nine battleground states to attack Obama's record on jobs and the national debt.
The wave of advertising rolls out today and runs through early August.
Romney...outstripped Obama second month in a row.