Just because the Obama campaign doesn't pay for cabs from O'Hare and staffers are expected to double-up at hotels doesn't make it frugal. Indeed, Obama oversees a team of 700 people--more than twice as many as Bush in 2004--the biggest, most bloated campaign in the history of presidential elections:
So far in 2008, combined campaign-spending data for the three most recent months available--February, March and April--show that Sen. Obama outspent Sen. McCain 4.5-to-1 on staff salaries, more than 2-to-1 on office rents, and 25-to-1 on broadcast advertising, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Sen. Obama has about 700 employees on the payroll, scattered across 19 states. The McCain cadre is around 100, divided among a handful of local offices.
These hired guns aren't going to deliver Obama the presidency. Having that many cooks in the kitchen is going to dilute his message and bleed him dry. With a burn rate of 114 percent, the Obama campaign won't be able to maintain spending at primary levels even if fundraising were to remain constant--which is unlikely because so many Democratic donors have already given the maximum contribution. Makes you wonder what kind of tax-and-spend operation Obama will run once he doesn't have to depend on voluntary contributors to foot the bill. Also makes you wonder how biased the media must be that it would characterize the Obama campaign as lean and efficient when in reality it is desperate, spendthrift, and broke. Finally, makes you wonder how a guy who has raised all this money, won his party's nomination, and received all this fawning attention for his historic achievement remains very nearly tied in the polls.
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