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Barack Obama's money machine rolls on

The U.S. economy may be troubled, but Barack Obama's campaign treasury isn't.

Aides to the Democratic presidential candidate just announced that he garnered more than $40 million in contributions during March (and they did an excellent job of managing expectations -- initial speculation had anticipated the figure would be more like $30 million).

His March take may pale a bit compared with the $55 million the campaign hauled in during February -- easily setting a monthly record for any candidate, ever -- but we think they'll take it.

Perhaps most impressive, almost half of those who wrote checks to Obama in March were first-time contributors to him.

Here are the basics, as released by the campaign:

Total raised in March: More than $40 million
Contributors in March: More than 442,000
First-time contributors in March: More than 218,000
Average contribution: $96
Total contributors to date: More than 1,276,000

No word yet from Hillary Clinton's team. But you can bet superdelegates will be comparing the numbers when they are available.

[UPDATE: Clinton aides, perhaps understandably, did not trumpet their figures through a news release or provide the type of detail the Obama campaign did. Instead, not for attribution, high-ranking staff members said she raised roughly $20 million in March -- enough, as she said during the day, to continue waging a full-scale fight for the nomination. She had raised close to #35 million in February.]

-- Don Frederick

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Well Obama is calling for "change."
I will send him a quarter and he can call somebody who cares.

Of course Obama can raise millions. His backers include Oprah, America's richest woman, and a contingent of multi-millionaire Hollywood and sports figures, a group that sadly seems to pass for intelligent and insightful these days in our shallow, media-mesmerized world. And let's not forget Obama's backers of a more unsavory flavor, such as Syrian-born Chicago 'businessman' Tony Rezko, now under federal indictment for fraud and extortion, and who knows how many other such characters? So, where's the surprise? With those kinds of backers, the shocker would be if Obama couldn't raise lots of cash. One has to wonder, however, whether many of his wealthy backers will find Obama quite so attractive when, if nominated/elected, he raises the capital gains tax, as he has indicated he will do to solve our dependence on foreign loans, to perhaps somewhere in the 25 to 65 percent range (see Falsely claiming to be a champion of the less fortunate, Obama -- raised in Hawaii, Harvard-educated and owner of a million-dollar-plus home adjacent to Rezko's in one of Chicago's most affluent neighborhoods -- has not spent one day of his life without privilege, nor has he ever held a real job other than being an attorney. His so-called 'public service' amounts to only a few years in elected office. Those of us who've had to work long and hard to realize even a tiny piece of the American dream, only to see it bankrupt and foreclosed upon in today's dismal economy, aren't quite as impressed with Obama's silvery-tongued rhetoric as are those of the "insto-fame" genre for whom Obama is now apparently the poster child and for whom he seems to have such appeal. When our fast-failing economy bottoms out, working-class people will be perhaps hardest hit, along with the elderly and disabled and young people newly entering the job market. Obama, an arrogant, selfish opportunist with nothing more than a gift for saying whatever any given audience wants to hear at any given time, cares not one whit for the problems of working-class and disadvantaged Americans. Why should he? With the millions he's now raking in using nothing more than carefully chosen rhetoric to seduce the media and rich backers into giving him a free pass, even if he's ultimately unsuccessful in his run toward the White House, he, his hateful wife and pastor -- the racist, anti-Semitic, anti-American Rev. Wright -- will be laughing all the way to the bank for a long time to come. While considering where to invest their millions to protect it from the freefalling value of the dollar, however, perhaps they'd better hope whoever does occupy the White House next has a much more detailed, effective, solid proposal for solving our nation's complex economic problems than a huge capital gains tax hike.

What's a Texas Democrat? Who's been representing you there?

It's been a hope in Texas, that Hillary and Obama unique candidates would energize political lifestyle!

Obama was the underdog but won Texas in delegates. Wasn't too far back in popular vote.

The question for Texas Democrats, to those in Ohio and anywhere else, if Obama wins the nomimation, he gets the Democrats vote in November.

People can say Obama isn't experienced enough. Do they say, it's because he's black?

The money Obama is raising is saying a lot! A huge cross section of people are giving his campaign enormous monetary support.

There is a huge risk for Democrats choosing McCain in November, those Conservative Republicans choices for the Supreme Court! Two justices are needing of being replaced!

Justice Roberts to number 1, he didn't earn that title on the Supreme Court through wise decesions, it was given to him that exalted spot and I didn't like it.

I thought there was some ascension process on the Supreme Court. Chief Justice forever just like that! A more temporary President shouldn't have that power.

Democrats who vote for McCain, your risking the Supreme Court even more to the Right with new one's picked that Conservative Republicans like.

Be flippant, if Obama wins, vote McCain. There are real problems about to occur for this country. The sameness of Bush policies, failed economic budgets and the continued poor image in the world.

Longer wars is a given with McCain, he believes in occupation. He hates the war battles and torture of prisoners. He does love spoils of war, military always getting Trillions in money. New war toys that cost Billions! Iraq isn't ending soon with McCain.

Boeing and Air Force Tanker job suppliers aren't voting for McCain! They blame him for losing those jobs!

Why would any Democrat vote for McCain? He claims to be a Conservative Republican now!


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
President Obama
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