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Pro-Obama 'super PAC' raises $10 million in August

September 04, 2012|By Melanie Mason | This post has been corrected, as indicated below.
  • A silhouetted President Obama steps off Air Force One upon his arrival at Naval Air Station Norfolk for a campaign appearance in Norfolk, Va.
A silhouetted President Obama steps off Air Force One upon his arrival at… (Pablo Martinez Monsivais…)

Priorities USA Action, the “super PAC” supporting President Obama’s reelection bid, raised $10 million in August, its most lucrative month of the campaign so far.

The haul was first reported by the New York Times and confirmed to the Los Angeles Times/Tribune Washington Bureau by strategist Bill Burton, one of two former White House aides running the group. Burton did not specify any notable donors who stepped up in August; those names will be revealed Sept. 20 when the group files its monthly finance report with the Federal Election Commission.

After a slow fundraising start — in January, the group pulled in only $58,815 — Priorities has been gaining momentum among Democratic donors. But it still lags behind its GOP equivalent, the pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future, which as of July, had outraised Priorities by more than $60 million for the election cycle, according to FEC filings.

The disparity between the two groups narrows when it comes to spending. Since April, when Romney secured the Republican nomination, Priorities has spent more than $21 million opposing the former Massachusetts governor, focusing mainly on his tenure at the private equity firm Bain Capital. Restore Our Future’s anti-Obama spending in that same time period totaled more than $28 million.

But while Priorities USA is behind the vast majority of anti-Romney ads — more than 80% according to an analysis by the Los Angeles Times Data Desk — Restore Our Future is just one of a number of heavyweight Republican outside groups playing roles in the presidential campaign. The most prolific players — nonprofit advocacy groups including Americans for Prosperity and Crossroads GPS — are not required to disclose their donors or fully report their political spending to the FEC.

[For the Record, 10:14 p.m. PST  Sept. 4: An earlier version of this post said the FEC filings would be released next week. They'll actually be unveiled Sept. 20.]

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melanie.mason@latimes.com

Twitter: @melmason

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