'Ready for Hillary' PAC has record $2.5m quarter, but Ben Carson's PAC raised more: $3.3m

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Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets,Hillary Clinton,Campaign Finance,2016 Elections,Super PACs,Ready for Hillary,Ben Carson

The high-fiving at the "fundraising-108908.html">Ready for Hillary" super PAC for its record $2.5 million second quarter take is being overshadowed by the even bigger $3.3 million fundraising avalanche at the much-less known National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee.

Both groups revealed their fundraising totals Tuesday and it was the growing bank account of the group supporting the conservative surgeon and Obamacare critic that drew gasps.

Officials said the group raised $3.3 million, with $1 million in May alone, and has raised $7.2 million so far in their effort to talk Carson, a darling of the right, to get into the GOP primaries. By comparison, the Clinton group, which has received tons of press and hired enough Clinton associates to staff the West Wing, has collected $8.25 million to date.

“The American people are continuing to show their overwhelming desire for Dr. Carson to run for the GOP nomination in the 2016 presidential election,” said Vernon Robinson, the committee's campaign director.

“The tremendous outpouring of donations and words of support clearly shows that people are clamoring for a principled, unifying leader like Dr. Carson in the White House. We will continue to do all we can to encourage him to run for president,” added John Philip Sousa IV, national chairman of the committee in a statement.

The group has sent some 6,000 signed petitions to Carson each week to encourage him to run.

In an interview, Sousa said that his group, a super PAC, isn't allowed to coordinate with Carson, but he believes Carson is itching to get into the race. "He's so much more leaning in that direction," said Sousa, noting that Carson has stepped up his speaking engagements. "I think every week he is more drawn to the idea of running for president."

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at pbedard@washingtonexaminer.com.