Obama's Viral Marketing Campaign

The Internet is changing the nature of political fund raising. The Illinois Senator has proved that small donors really matter

Jim Mone / AP

Barack Obama speaks during his Minnesota campaign kickoff at the International Market Square in Minneapolis, MN. on June 29, 2007.

As eye-popping as Barack Obama's second-quarter fund-raising total was--it raked in $31 million for his campaign for the 2008 Democratic nomination, beating even the much vaunted Clinton money machine by better than $10 million in funds for the primary race--what really has the political classes chattering is another figure Obama reported: 258,000. That's the number of people his campaign says have already donated to him, and it amounts to more than a doubling of his fund-raising base in the past three months. "He's got a much more viral campaign than we do," says an envious Hillary Clinton strategist, using a term...

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