Forget the fact that Barack Obama raised some $750 million — so much money that he famously rejected the spending limits associated with public financing — to win the White House in 2008. Now Newsweek tells us he’s struggling to raise enough money to compete with Republicans in his re-election bid.
One key problem? The 44th president himself.
“Obama is weak on the business of the White House,” says one senior House Democrat, who asked not to be named. “He doesn’t woo members or schmooze them, and his staff doesn’t invite people to the White House.” This disaffected Democrat describes Obama as “more constitutional law professor than politician,” adding, “he doesn’t smooth people or cuddle up to them. He sort of treats politics like changing diapers.”
Another key problem? The president’s unsuccessful economic policies.
For starters, it’s the economy, stupid; amid recession, getting folks to pony up can be a harder proposition. Obama has had four long years since arriving at the White House covered in pixie dust; familiarity, in today’s polarized political climate, has a tendency to breed contempt. There is simply a much smaller wellspring of wealthy Democrats who can afford to write seven-figure checks for political causes.
What remains to be seen is the way in which Alibi Ike will try to blame his fundraising deficiencies on George W. Bush.