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Inside Politics

Dean war chest swells, GOP dwarfs it

Dean campaign expects to match last quarter's $14.8 million

Howard Dean is the Democrats' strongest answer to President Bush in terms of fund raising.
Howard Dean is the Democrats' strongest answer to President Bush in terms of fund raising.

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Tuesday, January 13: District of Columbia primary

Monday, January 19: Iowa Caucuses

Tuesday, January 27: New Hampshire primary

When is your primary? For more key dates in the 2004 election season, see our special America Votes 2004 Election Calendar
• The Candidates: Bush | Kerry
Fund Raising

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Howard Dean will finish 2003 on a high note, in terms of fund raising.

The Democratic presidential candidate revealed Monday that he has raised more than $14 million in the last quarter of 2003, and expects to match the $14.8 million raised in the three-month period before that. That would put the Dean campaign total for the year at $40 million.

While that's likely to be the most money raised by any of the Democrats in the race, it still pales in comparison to the $50 million raised by the Bush-Cheney re-election team in the third quarter alone.

According to a message posted on the Dean web site from campaign manager Joe Trippi, 58,000 donors contributed in the last quarter.

The letter appeals to supporters to continue donating in the face of opposition from other Democratic candidates.

"[B]ecause you've built the greatest grassroots campaign in history, the other candidates are reverting to a none and two state strategy, and trying to throw up roadblocks of cash in your way," the posting says.

"All their money together is aimed at stopping our campaign, even as we need to focus on Washington State and Michigan and other races beyond -- and George Bush himself in the general election."

Other candidates have yet to reveal their fund-raising numbers, which do not have to be reported until the end of January.

• Last week, the Wesley Clark campaign told CNN it expects to raise $10 million in the quarter.

• Sen. John Edwards anticipated raising $5 million.

• Others, including Sens. John Kerry and Joe Lieberman and Rep. Dick Gephardt, declined to provide a forecast.

But last week, Kerry announced he was taking a mortgage of more than $6 million on his home to lend money to his campaign. He also loaned an additional $850,000 from his other assets. (Kerry set to loan campaign $6 million, Kerry takes out $850,000 loan)

By the end of the third quarter, Kerry had raised $20 million the second most among the Democrats.

But Kerry is also one of the top spenders of campaign cash, spending more than he raised last quarter.

Dean, on the other hand, only spent a little over half of the money he had raised.

Dean and Kerry have opted out of public financing which would have limited the amount of money they could spend in different primaries.

All the other candidates are accepting public financing and are eligible for up to approximately $18.6 million in matching funds.

The first checks are to be sent out by the Federal Election committee on January 2, 2004.

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