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California attracts U.S. presidential candidates with money, votes

06-06-2012 14:06 BJT

LOS ANGELES, June 5 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama will come Wednesday to Los Angeles, his fourth trip to the Golden State this year, to drum up money and support for the November presidential elections.

Obama's 24-hour visit in five fundraising events in California, which is neck-in-neck with New York as the most visited state outside of the capital, is expected to bring him 5.4 million U.S. dollars, according to figures provided by the Obama campaign.

Both Obama, who started his fundraising efforts in California earlier, and his Republican competitor Mitt Romney are campaigning in the state with full vigor because it is where the most money and votes come from.

California has 55 electoral votes, more than any other states in the country, and people there are generous in making campaign contributions.

According to the U.S. Federal Election Commission, the two campaigns took in nearly identical amounts of cash in April.

So far, California remains the top state contributing to Obama's re-election effort, accounting for roughly 20 percent of all contributions, according to the figures released by the Center for Responsive Politics.

"For Democrats, California is donor heaven, and because so many Californians support this president, it makes it an important place for him to come," Eric Bauman, vice chairman of the California Democratic Party, told the press.

California is traditionally pro Democratic in previous elections, and therefore it is likely for Obama to raise funds and get votes there.

As a tradition, Hollywood favors Democratic candidates. The funds raised by Obama are much higher than those by Romney in the entertainment industry, whereas Romney is taking the lead in other sectors such as finance and agriculture.

As for Romney, he can also rely on the money from California to win votes in other states.

"I think when the final tallies are done on the presidential campaign, Mitt Romney will have raised more money from California than any other state," said Jon Fleischman, a conservative blogger and former state Republican Party executive director.

The strategy for both parties is to raise money in big coastal cities like Los Angeles and New York to fund contests in places like Ohio, Colorado and Wisconsin.

The Obama campaign has held 94 fundraisers in New York City, Chicago, Washington D.C. and the state of California while only 47 have taken place across the rest of the country.

Romney has focused fundraising in larger cities as well. Nineteen of 47 fundraisers tracked by the Sunlight Foundation have taken place in California, New York City, Chicago and Washington.

A survey by The Field Poll released Friday showed that Obama has a 16 percentage-point lead (48 percent to 32 percent) over the Republican in California.

Nearly six in 10 Hispanics in the state intend to vote to re-elect Obama in the November presidential balloting, almost four times the number who supports Romney, the survey showed.

Latinos are a main sub-group that is "contributing heavily to Obama's preference advantage" in California along with African-Americans, Asians, independents, women and younger and middle-age voters.

However, the poll indicated that the proportion of California voters with a favorable perception of Obama has fallen to 53 percent over the past four years, while the proportion with a positive view of Romney rose two points to 40 percent between June 2011 and May 2012.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: Xinhua

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