President Barack Obama waves as he walks from Air Force One upon arriving at Buckley Air Force Base in Denver, Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2011. (AP Photo/Joe Mahoney) By Joe Mahoney
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama's campaign says he raised more than $70 million combined for his re-election and the Democratic party during the summer.
The amount exceeds a goal set by the campaign of $55 million combined for the July-September fundraising period but is about $16 million less than Obama raised during the first fundraising quarter of his re-election campaign.
The smaller fundraising haul shows the challenges Obama faces with declining poll numbers and a weak economy, which prompted the president to recently call himself the "underdog."
Obama campaign manager Jim Messina said Thursday that more than 600,000 people donated to the campaign in the most recent quarter, more than the previous three months.
He says 98 percent of the donors gave $250 or less, with an average donation of $56.