(WASHINGTON) — For the second consecutive month, President Obama has fallen off the record-setting fundraising pace he set four years ago.
His re-election campaign announced Monday that it raised $45 million in February, combining contributions to Obama for America, the Democratic National Committee and two joint fundraising accounts — the Obama Victory Fund and Swing State Victory Fund.
In February 2008, Obama raised $56 million.
The campaign’s financial update, which will be formally reported to the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday, follows an aggressive push for cash in recent weeks by Obama and his campaign aides, who have at times appeared panicked by the complacency of some Democratic donors and the looming influence of pro-GOP super PACs.
“We cannot underestimate someone like [Mitt] Romney who has shown he will spend and say anything to win,” campaign manager Jim Messina warned in a fundraising appeal last week that highlighted poll numbers showing Obama would lose to Romney if the election were held today.
In an email blast at 3 a.m. earlier in the month, Messina was outright critical of the base: “Too many Obama supporters are falling into a trap,” he wrote.
“They’re waiting to donate until we have a clear opponent. There’s too much at stake, and not enough time, to be doing that,” he said.
More than 348,000 people contributed to Obama’s re-election in February, including 105,000 first-time donors, the campaign said. All told, more than 1.5 million supporters have donated to Obama 2012. The average donation was $59.
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