The WSJ Does Democrat Propaganda?

October 22nd, 2006 1:15 AM

In what looks to be a rather misleading piece of information, reporter Jeanne Cummings of the Wall Street Journal has an article touting the fiscal responsibility of Democrats when it comes to campaign finance management, but the facts don't seem to support that case.

via Three Sources it appears that DailyKos, among others, are picking up the theme, perhaps as a way to assure voters that Liberals aren't the poor fiscal managers and tax and spend legislators history has proved them to be.

If you scroll down at the WSJ link you'll find a prominently featured pie chart which actually suggests Democrats have kept operational expenses down. The chart does lend that impression, as it relies on raw expenditure dollar amounts, but everyone, especially the Wall Street Journal should know that those numbers can't be analyzed as raw data. They need to be looked at as percentages of the gross number of dollars raised.

Those percentages are below, showing just the opposite of what the article suggests and highlighting the inefficient waste one might expect from bad management of big government.

While the RNC kept Operational expenses to 28.5 % of $137 Million dollars raised, the DNC expended over 40% of dollars raised on pure overhead. The NRCC versus the DCCC comparison is even worse. The NRCC kept operational expenditures to 12.7 % of budget, while the DCCC nearly tripled operational expenses as a percentage of dollars raised.

Et tu WSJ?

The numbers also reveal some other interesting observations, perhaps explaining why BushCo may be more comfortable where things stand. While the DNC has invested much more on the web in propping up the information flow, the RNC has been more engaged in telephone outreach. Not everyone gets their politics fed to them through the Internet, at least not yet.

As a minor point, the travel/gifts number should probably be taken with a grain of salt, given that Red States tend to be geographically larger, necessitating more travel for the RNC and it tends to not place as much focus on large cities with dense populations.

RNC 137 million raised

Operating exp 39 million 28.5 %
Consultants 7.9 mil     5.7 %
Travel/gifts 14.6 million  10.7 %
Telemarketing 14.9 mil  10.9 %
Legal 3.9 mil  2.8 %
Advertising 439,844  .3 %
Web 381,560  .27 %
Direct mail 56 mil  41 %

DNC 79 million raised

Operating exp 32 mil  40.5%
consultants 3.8 mil  4.8 %
travel/gifts 4 million  5%
telemarketing 3.3 mil 2.4%
legal 993,744 mil   1.2%
advertising 840,210  1.1 %
web 5.6 mil  7 %
direct mail 29.7 mil  37.6 %

NRCC 79 million raised

Operating exp 10 million 12.7 %
polls 1.8 mil 2.3 %
consultants 2 mil     2.5 %
travel/gifts 4.1 million  5.2 %
telemarketing 44.5 mil  10.9 %
legal 342,387 .4 %
web 153,912 .2 %
direct mail 15.7 mil  19.9 %

DCCC 37 million raised

Operating exp 11.8 million 32 %
polls .94  mil 2.5 %
consultants .174 mil     .45 %
travel/gifts 2.1 million  5.7 %
telemarketing 6.9 mil  10.9 %
legal 790,408 2.8 %
web 1.8 mil 4.9 %
direct mail 11.8 mil  32 %