Stephen Harper's Conservatives have raked in five times as much money from four times as many donors as the Liberal party during the first three months of this year.
Financial returns filed with Elections Canada show that the Tories raised $4.95 million from 44,345 contributors. At the same time, the Liberal party raised only $846,129 from 10,169 contributors.
Once Canada's most efficient political money-raising machine, the Liberals actually brought in less than the New Democratic Party during the first quarter of 2008; the NDP raised $1.1 million from 13,329 donors.
The Bloc Quebecois, which needs far less money since it operates strictly in Quebec, raised $37,006 from 463 donors.
The fledgling Green party brought in $210,962 from 4,731 donors.
By way of comparison, the NDP basically doubled their contributions from the last quarter, the Liberals less than half of their 4th quarter 2007 tally. I suppose an optimist would argue that the Liberals have doubled their haul from the same period last year, but that was after the leadership contest, hardly a fair comparison.
Nevermind the disturbing gap from the Conservatives, the NDP has more contributors, raised more money than the Liberals? I see this as directly attributable to what has been going in Ottawa. You can argue about the average Canadian taking notice, but there is no doubt party members, people who donate, know the landscape well. One party fights, one abstains, you do the math, or more correctly, look at the math.