Michael Ignatieff just sent me an email:
Over an eight month campaign for the leadership of our party in 2006, in the second biggest country in the world, I spent a little over $2million dollars. Barack Obama spends that amount on his national campaign every day! So I feel – as do all the leadership candidates – that we gave the party and the country a great race, at a very competitive price.
We raised the money on the old rules limiting donations to $5400.00. Now we’re repaying debt following the new rules, which limit contributions to $1100. So it hasn’t been easy, but we’re getting there.
I’ve held fund-raisers across the country and I’m incredibly grateful to all the generous people who contributed sums large and small to enable me to pay off my debt, and to the campaign workers and suppliers who put their faith in me as a candidate. I’ve also raised money for Liberal candidates and MP’s right across the country, as have the other leadership candidates.
My debt started at about $800,000. On June 3, when Elections Canada requires all of the leadership candidates to file returns, I will be reporting the significant progress that I have made with your help. I don’t quite know where I’ll be on that day – some contributions are still in the pipeline or are being processed by the party – but I will not be fully paid off by the deadline. I am within striking distance and expect to pay off the debt completely by the end of the summer.
So, dear friends, if you have not given your maximum of $1100 and still have a generous thought towards me or the other candidates, think of contributing online. Any amount large and small would be appreciated, and remember that you are helping us to keep our promises to all the people who put their faith in us and the party.
The email ends with a couple of links to his donation page.
What will be the consequences for Michael Ignatieff?
Will Elections Canada provide special treatment for Liberals that run afoul of its rules?
If so, what are the broader consequences for the Conservative Party’s argument that the government body is biased against them?
How much does Ignatieff owe?
Does this indicate that the Conservatives are better at raising money from their membership than the Liberals are? Why are Liberal members disengaged? Why aren’t Liberals giving?