Harris Media

Will Text-Message Fundraising Revolutionize the Political Cash Game?

“About a decade ago, the Internet revolutionized political fundraising. Could text messages be poised to repeat the feat?”

“The Federal Election Commission’s decision last week to allow fundraising solicitations via text message is a critical money-raising permutation for candidate scrambling for cash. And the newly legal pitch opens a new front in the battle between Mitt Romney and President Obama.”

“Which candidate best succeeds at incorporating the new fundraising tool will gain a possibly critical edge in a neck-and-neck presidential contest where every dollar raised and supporter mobilized is potentially crucial. Text-message solicitations have the potential to not only tap into a deep pool of small donors, political consultant from both parties say, but also cultivate a community of supporters who otherwise wouldn’t be involved in the race.”

“Carriers will subtract a fee for each donation, but the money could still add up quickly and substantially for each presidential campaign. How much money they receive, however, could hinge on how well either campaign deploys the new technique.”

“They won’t lack for ways to use it, according to GOP political strategist Vincent Harris.”

“Obama will, in theory, be able to text his 1 million plus people and say, ‘Romney outraised us. Let’s fight back. Text back a donation amount and you’ll be billed,'” Harris said. “Or he’ll be able to add a ‘short code’ number to text a donation amount into on the last 5 to 7 seconds of his TV ads.”