Filling the Hours, Coffers

President Bush found time to meet with some run-of-the-mill constituents in between fundraising events this week according to the Los Angeles Times and this article marveling at the President's enduring fundraising prowess.

Despite persistently low approval ratings that prevent him from advancing any significant policy initiatives, Bush has managed to fill his remaining hours in office with bunches of campaign contribution collections nights for other Republicans:


In 11 weeks, Bush has spoken at 11 Republican fundraising events, which have brought in at least $27 million -- a pace of $346,000 per day including Tuesday's two events.


[ . . .]

By dividing the president's time between political and official events, White House schedulers maximize the benefit to the party's accounts, because taxpayers pick up part of the expensive cost of his travel -- much of which would be paid by the beneficiaries of the fundraising event if the trip were entirely political. Bush also regularly speaks at fundraising galas in Washington. A year ago, he helped the Republican Governors Assn. pick up $10.4 million in one night; three weeks ago, the annual gala brought in $10.6 million.

Remember that last line the next time someone says that public financing of elections puts an undue burden on taxpayers. Also, remember this:

 

His success as a fundraiser appears unaffected by whether he is generally popular or not.

 

How interesting. His fundraising success is entirely independent of his public approval rating -- no matter how well voters think he's doing his job, he still rakes in big money for his party's candidates. Kind of puts paid to the idea that fundraising numbers can be seen as a legitimate proxy for public support, huh?