Barack’s ‘Bundlers’ Bring In Big Bucks

by InvestorPlace Staff | February 1, 2012 12:48 pm

[1]While the Super PAC supporting President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign hasn’t quite hit the heights of Romney’s Super PAC[2] yet, that doesn’t mean Obama is hurting for money. Obama has his own ace up his sleeve, in the former of “bundlers[3].”

What’s a bundler? Simply put, a bundler is someone who seeks out individuals to donate to a campaign. Because individuals are limited to donating a maximum of $2,500 per election[4] to a federal candidate or his campaign commitee, bundlers work by taking advantage of community or personal connections to “bundle” up many individuals’ contributions to a campaign.

In documents released yesterday, the Obama campaign revealed it had increased the number of bundlers who had collected $50,000 or more over the last three months of 2011 from 351 to 445. Overall, bundlers brought in $74.4 million last year, over 30% of the campaign’s overall haul.

Some well-recognized names are among the list of Obama bundlers. They include former Rep. and son of former Sen. Ted Kennedy, Patrick Kennedy; Hollywood agent Ari Emanuel, the brother of former White House chief of staff and current Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel; DreamWorks co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg; UBS (NYSE:UBS[5]) Investment Bank president and UBS Group Americas Chairman Robert Wolf; Desperate Housewives actress Eva Longoria; and Dancing With the Stars contestant and TV journalist Giselle Fernandez.

While using bundlers has become a fairly popular political practice for both parties (see the Bush Pioneers for George W. Bush’s 2000 and 2004 campaigns), Obama is the only major candidate thus far to release the names of all his bundlers for this election cycle.

Overall, Obama hopes to raise $800 million for his re-election campaign.

For more information, check out this Politico blog entry[6].

— Benjamin Nanamaker, InvestorPlace Money & Politics Editor

The opinions contained in this column are solely those of the writer.

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  6. Politico blog entry:

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