PAC clout will be greater on Capitol Hill than on Pennsylvania Ave.
Ezra Klein, Washington Post, 4/27/12
President Obama’s re-election campaign is likely to have more money than any presidential campaign in history. Republican Mitt Romney’s campaign, when you factor in the super PACs supporting him, could have even more money than that.
Both candidates will, in other words, have more than enough money to get out their messages, attack their opponent and support their ground games. Even as they’re spending all this money on paid media, the campaigns will receive an almost infinite amount of free media from newspapers, television, magazines and blogs that will spend the next seven months doing nothing but covering the presidential campaign.
Yet, at the presidential level, money isn’t everything. In fact, sometimes it’s not even the main thing. Note that Rick Santorum, who was outspent many times over by Romney, nevertheless bested him in a number of Republican primaries.
Just as youth is wasted on the young, money is wasted on the rich. Money is least useful in contests where news coverage is most intense and opinions are most entrenched. How many people do you know who still aren’t sure what they think of Obama? Or are undecided about Romney? Probably not many.