From NBC's Mark Murray
This morning, Edwards adviser Joe Trippi sent out this email fundraising solicitation: "This is it -- with 10 days left in the second quarter, we're about two-thirds of the way towards our goal of raising $9 million -- double what we raised at this time in the 2004 race."Our immediate reaction: $9 million? With Clinton and Obama once again poised to raise well over $20 million for the quarter, will a $9 million keep Edwards within striking distance of the two other Democratic front-runners? (Edwards raised more than $14 million in the first fundraising quarter.)
An Edwards campaign source tells First Read that the more important goal in that Trippi email is the $40 million the campaign hopes to raise before the Iowa caucuses, more than double what Edwards raised before the 2004 caucuses. If the campaign raises that $40 amount, it believes it will have more than enough to compete in the first four nominating contests (Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, and South Carolina). "We're not running the types of campaigns that Barack and Hillary are running," the source says. "They are celebrities."
As part of another effort to bolster its fundraising haul, the Edwards campaign unveiled a new text-messaging fundraising initiative that will allow supporters to receive a voicemail message from Edwards urging them to make a contribution to the campaign.