Democrats’ Fundraising Totals $220 Million

WASHINGTON (AP) — The $68 million collected by President Barack Obama and the Democratic Party in the final three months of the year brings the total to $220 million for all of 2011.

It puts Obama far ahead of Republican candidates. But that money advantage may not be what it seems.

Super-PACs and big-money independent groups have changed the rules of the game. Groups that support Republicans have raised tens of millions of dollars during the primary season — including a group that leans in favor of Mitt Romney and has said it plans to raise more than $200 million this election cycle.

The Obama campaign has watched as the outside groups have already had an impact on the Republican primaries. Newt Gingrich built up a lead in Iowa, only to see it erode under a $3 million tidal wave of negative ads launched by the outside group supporting Romney.

Democratic-leaning groups like Priorities USA Action haven’t spent nearly the same amount as their GOP counterparts.

Speaking to New Hampshire Democrats this week on the night of the state’s primary, Vice President Joe Biden said Democrats face some “daunting odds,” adding, “We’re not going to have these hundreds of millions of dollars in super PACs.”

Source: Associated Press