That my friends, is a serious amount of money. It could buy you one of the most expensive apartments in New York or help fuel one of the most important political campaigns in recent memory. Last month 632,000 new donors joined the previous 2.5 million donors of Barack Obama and gave generously to Barack Obama as a whole but individually the average donation is still under $100. That is what you call people power and what it buys is much more than television time.
The ads are running fast and furious, but the ground game is equally important. Following in the path of the wise Chairman Howard Dean, the fifty-state strategy is showing more and more of its true potential. States that old Democratic elites thought were impossible are now in play. Montana, Georgia, North Carolina, Colorado and North Dakota are just a few Bush states that John McCain must fight in to keep his struggling campaign alive. As he concedes states such as Michigan and Maine, Obama is taking his game across the country and helping down-ticket candidates for House and Senate seats as he goes. Who knows if McCain will release his own September numbers before Nov 4th, but the question here and for that first Tuesday in November isn't about who won, it is by how much will Obama win by.
The key here is that September was when the contours of the current context first became truly visible: The GOP convention took place at the start of the month, and hockey mom/pitbull with lipstick Sarah Palin was first introduced to America as John McCain's choice for backup commander in chief.
What's more, as the month unfolded, it became clearer and clearer that McCain had made a strategic decision to wage a campaign dominated by slimy attacks, vile adver-sleazements, and cosmic levels of mendacity. And Obama's donor base responded in kind, as did more than half a million newcomers.Late Update: Plouffe's video announcing the decision to supporters is here.