Bob Rae is on top when it comes to raising cash in the Liberal leadership race, according to an Elections Canada fundraising report.
But the report of donations up to the end of June shows none of the 11 candidates are anywhere near the $3.4-million maximum the party has set for each campaign.
Mr. Rae's $384,795 in donations is the highest, followed by Michael Ignatieff, with $293,896 and Joe Volpe with $210,170.
Mr. Ignatieff, who is perceived by many to be the front-runner, nonetheless comes out ahead in terms of the total number of contributors. Mr. Ignatieff's campaign lists 510 individuals as having offered donations, including the maximum $5,400 from former Ontario premier David Peterson.
Kennedy has raised a respectable, if not overly impressive $103,778, from 142 donors. What Kennedy may lack in fundraising, might be offset by enthusiam with his youthful volunteer base. The big loser in this measure of support would have to be Dion:
Though Liberal MP Stéphane Dion's name has been mentioned increasingly of late as a top-tier candidate, his fundraising numbers are near the bottom of the pack.
Mr. Dion's team has listed 65 donors for a total of $32,250
I'm somewhat surprised that Dion hasn't raised more money. The real negative may come from the perception that his stature in this race may have been overstated. I think this numbers are really a reflection of who has the backing of the party powerbrokers more than a true indication of support, but they are important in terms of momentum. Bad press is bad press, and Dion looks weakened with these numbers.
On the other hand, Rae looks increasingly relevant and shows he has the structure to work for delegates. These fundraising totals help quiet the perception that Rae has too many negatives to be taken seriously. This is shaping up to be a good week for Rae, as he moves toe to toe with Iggy on issues and money.
Finally, I would love to see a breakdown of Volpe's fundraising, before and after the child donations. How anyone could give this man a penny is beyond me.
An example of how fundraising totals can influence perception. It's not the money, its how the numbers are portrayed and drive momentum.