OFA’s First Quarter Flop: $4.8 Million

Jon Carson with President Obama (White House photo)

President Obama's dark money group Organizing for Action (OFA) announced Friday a first-quarter fundraising total of approximately $4.8 million.

OFA executive director Jon Carson said the group saw 109,582 "founding members" donate an average of $44, in an email to supporters. Carson did not disclose the median donation.

The slight figure does not compare well to the campaign fundraising totals of last year, despite OFA's ability to take in unlimited donations as a tax-exempt 501(c)(4).

But, as Politico notes, OFA's first quarter does not even stack up well next to the Democratic National Committee's first post-election quarter in 2009, when the DNC raised $14 million.

OFA has run into a number of public bumps since its formation in January, including tensions between the group and its now fundraising counterpart DNC.

The group has also drawn intense scrutiny for a donor scheme that would entreat high-level donors to certain levels of White House access.

And then there's the low attendance at the group's first major event. Fewer than 100 people showed up to the first session of OFA's two-day "Founders Summit" last month. The president spoke to a group of OFA donors on the first night of the summit; that dinner cost a reported $50,000 to attend.

OFA will release the names of donors (but not their employers) who gave more than $250 this afternoon in donation ranges. Because of its legal status, the group is not required to disclose any donor information.