Obama campaign sees red in May money totals

Olivier Knox
The Ticket

President Barack Obama's campaign spent more than it took in over the month of May despite his frenetic fundraising schedule, leaving the massive operation with just shy of $110 million dollars cash on hand against $115 million one month earlier.

The embattled incumbent scooped up a hair over $39 million dollars but spent nearly $44.6 million, according to a formal filing with the Federal Election Commission. A more detailed breakdown can be found here.

The figures followed the release of data showing that Republican standard-bearer Mitt Romney outraised Obama and Democrats in May—the first time the former Massachusetts governor topped the president in the 2012 cycle.

A senior Obama campaign strategist, briefing reporters on condition of anonymity, said earlier in the day that Romney would best his earlier total—and predicted that the Republican's hauls, plus unrestricted super-PAC cash, would mean "we're going to be the first incumbent outspent."The super-PAC phenomenon has been a recurring source of hand-wringing at Obama HQ in Chicago. Aides say they worry that those deep pockets will unleash an unprecedented blitz of negative ads—and that comparable entities on the Democratic side lack the cash to counter effectively.

"I think [Romney's] going to have a $100 million month this month between he and the RNC," the strategist said. "I think you are going to see another huge month from him."

"Given Sen. Kerry outraised Bush two to one in the first couple of months after he won the nomination, I think Romney is going to continue to have big months. Combined with that with the super PAC stuff, we're going to be the first incumbent outspent," the strategist said.

David Chalian contributed reporting