Romney, under-funded rivals in hunt for cash

By Kasie Hunt

Associated Press

Published: Monday, Feb. 13 2012 12:00 a.m. MST

He's in California through Thursday, almost exclusively focused on fundraising. He's holding three private fundraisers in Los Angeles, money events in San Diego and Fresno on Tuesday and in the San Francisco Bay area on Wednesday. He has just a handful of public events, including in Arizona and his former home state of Georgia.

Romney was campaigning in Arizona late Monday, stopping there between fundraisers in California and New York. He plans to head to Michigan for two days later this week to fend off a sudden challenge from Santorum — but is slated to stop in Idaho after that to raise money.

He's focused on defending himself in the next states to vote, with Gingrich challenging him in Arizona and Santorum in Michigan.

Anticipating a long fight from the start of this campaign, Romney spent nearly all of last year focusing on fundraising in hopes of stockpiling enough cash.

By year's end, Romney had raised far more than his rivals, roughly $56 million.

He had $19 million on hand as 2012 and the state-by-state voting began.

But he's spent the most, too.

So far, his campaign has spent about $11 million on TV ads. He's bolstered by Restore Our Future, which spent more than $14 million.

Still unclear is whether Romney will draw on his considerable personal fortune. He spent $45 million of his own money in 2008 but hasn't signaled he'll do the same this year.

By contrast, Gingrich raised $12.6 million while Santorum netted $2.2 million last year. And, on TV, Gingrich his allies have spent about $7 million while Santorum and his backers have spent about $2.5 million.

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