President Barack Obama's reelection campaign manager bluntly urged the incumbent's supporters to "fight like hell and win this thing" after Mitt Romney out-fundraised the president in May.
"For the first time in this campaign, we got beat in fundraising," Jim Messina said in an email to Obama supporters, urging them to open their wallets after Romney and the Republicans hauled in $76.8 million, compared to $60 million for the president and the Democrats.
"We knew this moment would come when Romney secured the nomination. What happens next is up to you. Help close the gap right now — make a donation of $3 or more," Messina says in the message.
Campaign aides have told Yahoo News in the past that the dollar amount requested in fundraising emails is based on prior giving. Giving nothing, apparently, yields a request for three bucks.Both sides have been battling to show an edge in small donors. The Romney campaign said it raised $12 million in donations of $250 or less in May, and 93 percent of its individual donors overall gave $250 or less. The Obama campaign said its average donation was $54.94, and 98 percent of donations were under $250.
"I want to be clear: We'll always have more people pitching in," Messina said.
"From the beginning we've built this campaign together, from the bottom up. More people giving a little bit is the only way to compete with a few people giving a lot."