Blog Posts by Holly Bailey, Yahoo News

  • Mitt Romney raises big cash, but trails rivals among small donors

    Photo of Romney shaking hands at a NASCAR race (Jim Cole/AP)Mitt Romney raised more cash than any of his GOP rivals between April and June, but he lagged behind competitors in one important measurement: support from small-dollar contributors.

    Per the Center for Responsive Politics, just 6 percent of the $18.4 million Romney raised during the last three months came from donors who contributed $200 or less.

    By comparison, more than two-thirds of the $1.6 million Michele Bachmann raised as a presidential candidate came from small donors. (There's a chance her percentage could even be higher since that total does not include the $2 million Bachmann transferred from her congressional campaign account, which also raised big money in small contributions.)

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  • GOP’s image takes a hit in the debt ceiling fight

    (Photo of Boehner and Obama: Charles Dharapak/AP)Are Republicans facing a serious political risk in rejecting President Obama's call for a sweeping plan to deal with the nation's debt crisis?

    With the deadline swiftly approaching to come up with an agreement that would raise the $14.3 trillion ceiling, a new CBS News poll finds Republicans losing the battle for public opinion in the debate, with 71 percent of Americans casting their disapproval of the GOP's handling of the crisis.

    Perhaps most notable: Fifty-one percent of Republicans in the survey say they disapprove of how their party leaders in Washington are handling the debt negotiations.

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  • Rick Perry feels ‘called’ to run for president

    (Photo of Perry: Patrick Semansky/AP)Rick Perry says he'll decide within the next three weeks whether he'll make a bid for the 2012 GOP nomination, but he already sounds like a candidate.

    In an interview with the Des Moines Register's Jason Clayworth, the Texas governor says he feels "called" to run for president.

    "I'm not ready to tell you that I'm ready to announce that I'm in," Perry told the Register. "But I'm getting more and more comfortable every day that this is what I've been called to do. This is what America needs."

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  • Anna Wintour raised at least $500k for Obama’s re-election bid

    (Photo of Wintour: Francois Durand/Getty Images)President Obama's re-election campaign has credited the "grassroots" for the whopping $86 million Obama raised for his 2012 bid and the Democratic National Committee between April and June.

    But a significant chunk of that fundraising haul came to the campaign though big-money donors who raised serious cash for Obama over the last three months. On Friday, the Obama campaign voluntarily released a list of 244 "volunteer fundraisers" who raised at least $50,000 apiece for Obama's re-election bid.

    The tally disclosed 27 donors who bundled contributions of $500,000 or more--a list that included well-known figures like Vogue Magazine editor Anna Wintour, former New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine and Hollywood producer Jeffrey Katzenberg.

    Another 41 donors raised between $200,000 and $500,000, 89 raised between $100,000 and $200,000 while 87 raised between $50,000 and $100,000.

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  • Rick Santorum trails 2012 rivals in fundraising

    (Photo of Santorum: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)Rick Santorum has long suggested he was compelled to run for president by his fellow Republicans, but donors don't seem to be as enthusiastic about his 2012 bid.

    According to a report filed today with the Federal Election Commission, the former Pennsylvania senator raised just over $582,000 for his presidential campaign between April and June, ending last month with roughly $229,000 in the bank.

    That's the lowest haul of any of the main 2012 GOP contenders—but Santorum's campaign tried to spin the numbers, arguing the ex-senator has made a "solid" start on the money front.

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  • Tim Pawlenty makes another big ad buy in Iowa

    (Photo of Pawlenty: Charlie Neibergall/AP)It appears Tim Pawlenty may be willing to bet his entire campaign on the upcoming Iowa straw poll.

    Per Politico's Bryan Tau, the former Minnesota governor's campaign has placed a $200,000 TV and radio ad buy in the Des Moines media market ahead of the Aug. 13th poll in Ames. That brings Pawlenty's ad spending in the state in recent weeks to more than $400,000--a major chunk of cash for Pawlenty's less than flush campaign.

    According to Pawlenty aides, the ex-governor ended the second fundraising quarter on June 30th with $1.4 million cash in the bank to spend on the GOP primary.

    The campaign had previously said it had budgeted nearly $1.8 million to spend on the Ames straw poll alone. It's unclear if Pawlenty will stick with that estimate given he's expected to have less cash on hand than many of his 2012 rivals, including Michele Bachmann, who will finally disclose her second quarter financials to the Federal Election Commission today.

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  • Obama calls on Congress to ‘seize the moment’ on debt talks

    (Photo of Obama: Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP)President Obama with new immediacy today reiterated his call for a sweeping plan to deal with the nation's long-term debt problems. He warned GOP lawmakers that time is running out on a deal that would prevent the U.S. from defaulting on its financial obligations.

    In his second news conference this week on the issue, Obama called on lawmakers to give him a "serious" plan to raise the debt ceiling within the next 24 or 36 hours. But he emphasized the need for Congress to "put politics aside" and tackle an "ambitious" solution to the nation's deficit problems--not just a quick fix.

    "We have a unique opportunity to do something big," Obama said. "We have a chance to stabilize America's finances for a decade, for 15 or 20 years, if we are willing to seize the moment."

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  • Judge sets John Edwards trial for October

    (Photo of Edwards: Gerry Broome/AP)

    John Edwards' trial will begin in October, a federal judge ruled Thursday, rejecting claims from the former Democratic presidential hopeful's attorneys that they needed more time to prepare.

    The former North Carolina senator had been pressing for a January trial date, but per the Associated Press' Tom Breen, District Court Judge Carlton Tilley said he saw no reason to postpone the trial further.

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  • Book claims Obama misstated mother’s struggle with health care coverage

    (Photo of Obama and his mother: Obama campaign via AP)During his 2008 presidential campaign and his subsequent fight to enact health care reform legislation, President Obama frequently told a heart-wrenching story of how problems with the nation's insurance system had touched his own family.

    He said his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, had spent the final months of her life battling with insurance companies who refused to pay for her medical treatments because they claimed her ovarian cancer had been a pre-existing condition.

    "She wasn't thinking about coming to terms with her own mortality," Obama said at a rally in September 2007. "She had been diagnosed just as she was transitioning between jobs, and she wasn't sure whether insurance was going to cover the medical expenses because they might consider this a pre-existing condition. I remember just being heartbroken, seeing her struggle through the paperwork and the medical bills and the insurance forms. So, I have seen what it's like when somebody you love is suffering because of a broken health care system, and it's wrong. It's not who we are as a people."

    But the story, which was the subject of an Obama campaign ad in 2008, is facing critical scrutiny in a new biography of Obama's mother, which reports Dunham actually did have health coverage for most of her bills when she died of cancer in 1995.

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  • Perry calls Chuck Grassley about potential 2012 run

    (Photo of Perry: Darren Abate/AP)Here's another sign that Rick Perry is increasingly serious about a 2012 bid: The Texas governor phoned Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley about his prospective campaign.

    Per the Des Moines Register, Grassley told reporters on a conference call Wednesday that he had spoken with Perry about a potential 2012 run earlier this week.

    Grassley, a top Iowa Republican who often plays an influential role in presidential politics, declined to divulge what Perry said to him. But the senator told reporters he advised the GOP governor to make Iowa a priority should he decide to run.

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