News

Local donors give $803,000 to Obama

Mitt Romney's local take: $399,000.

Click on chart to enlarge.

By Dave Boyce

Almanac Staff Writer

Individuals listing ZIP codes in the Almanac's area -- Atherton, Menlo Park, Portola Valley and Woodside -- have given approximately $1.26 million to the Democratic and Republican presidential campaigns as of Feb. 29, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, which tracks money in politics.

President Barack Obama's campaign received a total of $802,993 as of Feb. 29 from individuals who listed ZIP codes in Atherton, Menlo Park, Portola Valley and Woodside, according to the OpenSecrets.org, the website of the Center for Responsive Politics in Washington, D.C.

Former Gov. Mitt Romney's campaign take from those same four communities was about half that: $399,390, according to the website.

Under the law, individuals are limited to donations of $2,500 per campaign for each election. Since there are two elections this year -- the primary in June and the general in the November -- an individual's total gift can reach $5,000.

If such donations count for anything in an era of no limits at all for "super" political action committees, local donors to Mr. Obama's campaign appear to be blowing the doors off the fundraising of his likely opponent in the fall, Mr. Romney.

However, because Mr. Obama is the unopposed choice of his party, his donors have been allowed to give for both the primary and general elections, and some 107 individuals listing ZIP codes in the Almanac's circulation area have done that.

Mr. Romney's donors are limited to individual donations of $2,500. If he is nominated, they can give up to $2,500 more.

With the general election donations factored out, Mr. Obama's total drops to about $619,500.

Just one resident is on record as having given significantly to both parties: Timothy Draper, a principal at the Menlo Park venture capital firm of Draper Fisher Jurvetson. Mr. Draper gave the $2,500 maximum to Mr. Romney for his primary campaign, and gave that same amount twice to Mr. Obama, once for the primary and once for the general election.

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