WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama pulled in $29.1 million for his re-election campaign and the Democratic Party in January, raising his total for this election cycle to about $250 million.
The sum, announced Friday, shows he has picked up the pace from his $23 million-a-month average of the final three months of last year
According to financial reports and Obama campaign officials, the Obama Victory Fund, a joint venture of his campaign and the Democratic National Committee, raised $13.4 million. Separately, the Obama campaign raised $9.3 million, the DNC raised $6.1 million and an Obama swing state fund raised $384,000.
The Obama campaign said 98 percent of January donations were $250 or less. Federal Election Commission filings show Obama's campaign alone pulled in more than $5 million in unitemized contributions, usually less than $200 apiece.
Many of those donors, however, are repeat contributors, meaning that their total donations over the past year would top $250. Still, the nonpartisan Campaign Finance Institute, which analyzes contributions, said small donors accounted for 48 percent of Oba-ma's campaign income in 2011.
That more than doubles the small donor contributions to his campaign in 2007, as he mounted his first campaign for president. What's more, the institute found that small donors accounted for only 9 percent of 2011 fundraising for Republican Mitt Romney, who is battling for front-runner status in the GOP presidential primary and is the top fundraiser in the Republican contest.
Presidential candidates must submit January fundraising reports to the Federal Election Commission by Monday.
Switch to Santorum: Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine switched his endorsement from Mitt Romney to Rick Santorum on Friday in a defection he said was driven by his belief the former Pennsylvania senator can win the Republican presidential race. DeWine, a former senator who led John McCain's Ohio presidential campaign in 2008, made the announcement in the company of Santorum at the Statehouse in Columbus.