Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Liberal Fundraising Facts

Thought these figures were interesting:
According to briefing notes, obtained by The Canadian Press, only 5.6 per cent of Liberal party members have donated so far this year to the party, one of its riding associations or to one of the former leadership candidates, who are struggling to pay off about $3.6 million in cumulative debt.

Only 29 per cent of Liberal MPs have donated to the party and almost none of their staff members. By contrast, 65 per cent of Liberal senators have contributed.

The party will put on a major push this fall to boost donations. Among other things, it will employ former prime minister Jean Chretien and Paul Martin to make email solicitations.

High profile Liberals, including MPs, will be asked to commit to raise anywhere from $5,000 to $50,000 each.

And in November the party hopes to simultaneously stage 100 fundraising dinners across the country, each attended by 50 people paying $50 a head. The event is being billed as "One Night, 100 Dinners."

The good news, if the Liberals can ever tap into that other 94.4% of Liberal members, it could translate into a fundraising bonanza ;) How about the 71% of MP's (what would Harper do)? In all seriousness, the lack of donations from hardcore partisans is another indication of something amiss. If you can't motivate the base to donate, seems to me you will have a pretty hard time motivating the general population to support you.

On the plus side, I did recently receive a call from a party worker in Ottawa, saying they were going through the national membership list to solicite donations. On the negative, if the above is any indication, I wouldn't expect a great third quarter in fundraising, which will fuel the negative flames. That fact might explain the mass email I received from the Party President yesterday, which started ominously:
It wasn't our first setback and likely won't be our last.

BTW, I have donated, not to mention the two cents spewed daily :)


Monkey Loves to Fight said...

I am one of the 5.6% who has donated to the party, but it was only $50 and considering how much a make, they won't be receiving another donation until next year. I feel it is best I donate a small amount every year rather than a large amount as I don't want to encourage the party, as it did in the past, to be reliant on a few large donors.

Steve V said...


Even more surprising than the membership, the MP's, despite the poor first quarter. What is their excuse?

susansmith said...

they don't believe in the product?:)

rabbit said...

I've always felt that the pundits miss out by not keeping close tabs on party finances. Never mind each party's policies - how much money do they each have in the kitty?

Dion was threatening to bring down the government last spring. I was pretty sure he posturing because I knew the conservatives were in much better shape financially than the liberals. Dion needed to buy time to build a war chest (as well as solidify his hold on the leadership).

And you can be damn sure Harper knew that.

Anonymous said...

When will the Liberal Party raise enough money to pay back what they stole from Canadians?

Jeff said...

Ironically, the Liberals would be in better shape during an election campaign than outside one. They've raised and banked the money to run a campaign, and during the writ period the spending call applies so the playing field is level (in theory, see ConAd Scandal). Outside the writ period, when spending isn't regulated, is when the Con's money advantage applies, allowing them to run those lovely commercials we're sure to see more of any day now.

Bailey said...

I received a call too the other week but I was out at dinner so I couldn't talk. But the person asked if they could call next week and I said yes. Next week came and went, without a call....

I'm one of the 94% that hasn't donated this year. I have no real excuse other than I've just keep putting it off till tomorrow.

Gayle said...

"Dion was threatening to bring down the government last spring."

No he wasn't.

I am not a member but I do donate. I used to get emails all the time asking for more (I donate monthly), but I haven't got on in a while.

I must say I am a little less inclined to donate when the MP's will not even do it.

Steve V said...


I think what rabbit is referring too, the Cons were saying that Dion was threatening to pull the plug, to cover their own ambitions.

The MP angle is also interesting, because donations include helping with leadership debt. MP's should give the maximum, by my calculations, another 65 grand for the kitty.

Monkey Loves to Fight said...

Steve V - I don't know why so few MPs have donated. All I did was go online and pay by credit card. And if you are not comfortable doing this, you can easily write out a check. All of us have monthly bills to pay so it doesn't take any longer than it does to pay say your electrical bill.

My only guess here is the Conservatives are more ideological and people who are outside the mainstream cannot win on numbers alone, so they are more motivated to donate than those in the centre. The centre is where the party should be since that is where the most votes are, yet the strongest base tends to be found furthest from the centre, it is just they don't yield too many votes come election time.

Susan said...

I have donated several hundred but am frustrated that I can't figure out the rules. What is the annual cap and does that apply to an election period as well or is that separate? Also does that include the federal, provincial and local branches or are there limits for all three separately. Also does that include donating at a fundraiser event, like a dinner? The Liberals really need a question e-mail address that someone answers besides Facebook. And finally, every Liberal should donate the max at this time in history - it's our country we're fighting for. If I could get answers I'd do some fundraising locally.