Lloyd Grove gets a leak of a call from the POTUS to former top donors, in which he warns about the dangers of letting a few billionaires buy the election.
“I’m asking you to meet or exceed what you did in 2008,” the presidential pitchman continued, speaking to donors who were invited to dial in based on their contributions during the last election. “Because we’re going to have to deal with these super PACs in a serious way. And if we don’t, frankly I think the political [scene] is going to be changed permanently. Because the special interests that are financing my opponent’s campaign are just going to consolidate themselves. They’re gonna run Congress and the White House.”
The president’s 18-minute pleading—a recording of which was provided to The Daily Beast by an Obama contributor—hardly sounded like a man doing a victory lap after Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling upholding Obamacare, as the Affordable Care Act has come to be known. Or, for that matter, like a candidate who has been beating his Republican opponent in recent polls of key battleground states.
Rather, Obama sounded like a dog-tired idealist forced to grapple painfully with hard reality. “In 2008 everything was new and exciting about our campaign,” Obama said. “And now I’m the incumbent president. I’ve got gray hair. People have seen disappointment because folks had a vision of change happening immediately. And it turns out change is hard, especially when you’ve got an obstructionist Republican Congress.”
But lest any of his donors believe the president sounded depressed, Obama quickly added: “Nevertheless, we’ve gotten more done in the last three years than most presidents do in eight years … I just hope you guys haven’t become disillusioned. I hope all of you still understand what’s at stake and why this is so important … I still believe in you guys, and I hope you still believe in me and the possibilities of this campaign.”…
Not that it’s particularly newsworthy that a candidate would fundraise (especially with an FEC filing deadline approaching. I know i’m inundated with fundraising emails — note to campaigns: I CAN’T GIVE, DUE TO MY JOB…) but I think it’s smart for the president to make it real for high dollar Dems. I’m seeing a lot of drape measuring by Republicans and a spreading belief among pundits that Romney will win, while Dems seem almost overconfident that Obama will prevail. Overconfidence is dangerous in this instance. The special interests emboldened by Citizens United are playing for keeps. If Dems are serious, they’d better seriously be writing checks. Just sayin.
Read it all at The Daily Beast.