Texans Rick Perry and Ron Paul announced impressive fund-raising numbers for the third quarter that respectively reflect the strengths of the presidential candidates. Perry raised more than $17 million despite having entered the race in the middle of the fund-raising period. Paul raised more than $8 million.
Unlike other candidates, who had 92 days to raise money, Perry’s haul is more significant because he raised that sum in only 49 days.
“The generous contributions from Americans across the nation prove the overwhelming support for Gov. Perry’s principled, conservative leadership and vision to get America working again,” said Perry campaign manager Rob Johnson in a statement. “The governor will continue traveling the country talking directly to Americans about restoring our economic strength, job creation, and putting our country on a path to prosperity and opportunity for future generations. Gov. Perry deeply appreciates the energetic support and hard work of the thousands of Republican volunteers and activists who’ve helped us build a strong and growing organization in just seven weeks.”
Unlike candidates whose campaigns have gotten off to rocky starts, such as Michele Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, and Herman Cain, Perry’s impressive war chest will allow him to introduce himself again to voters and get a “do-over” of sorts just as primary voters, a plurality of whom are still undecided, according to some national polls, tune in and start taking the presidential primary more seriously.
Further, even more impressive was Perry’s announcement that he had $15 million cash on hand and more than 22,000 unique contributors. This represents significant institutional strength combined with enough grassroots support to allow Perry to remain a formidable top-tier contender.
Paul’s numbers, on the other hand, showed, as is always with his campaign, that the grassroots are propelling his presidential aspirations.
At an appearance at the National Press Club on Wednesday, Paul announced that he had more than 100,000 people contribute to his campaign. This fervent following will allow Paul to potentially be one of the last candidates standing after the early rush of nominating contests.
The fund-raising numbers also show that it will be difficult if not impossible for Perry or Paul to be knocked out early, even if they perform below expectations in states such as Iowa or New Hampshire.