Obama Campaign Spends $750K on Swag in February
The Obama campaign store in Chicago is stocked with at least $758,000 in merchandise, including $10,000 in cosmetics designed by Richard Blanch of Le Métier de Beauté, according to financial disclosure reports released today.
The Obama Victory Fund, a joint account managed by Obama's re-election team and the Democratic National Committee, made the purchases of promotional goods and apparel in February from six creative marketing companies, including Creative Solutions of Morganville, N.J.; Financial Innovations of Cranston, R.I.; Grossman Marketing Group of Chelsea, Mass.; and In Record Time and Blanch Holdings both of New York, N.Y.
The campaign also made two purchases from Metier Tribecca LLC, a designer cosmetics wholesaler owned by Blanch, records show.
The expenses are listed as "campaign store merchandise expense and fulfillment" on the fund's monthly financial report, which was filed with the Federal Election Commission today.
The only cosmetic product branded with Obama-Biden 2012 and for sale in the campaign's online store is a $40 Blanch-designed nail polish kit that includes three lacquers in a "collectable make-up bag." It's listed as part of the campaign's Runway to Win series of products, aimed courting an upscale crowd.
Other Obama-themed products for sale include dog T-shirts, iPhone cases, basketball jerseys, can koozies, cufflinks, martini glasses, jewelry and tote bags. The website declares "all products made in the USA."
While the campaign won't discuss revenue from online sales or identify the most popular items, the size of the single-month merchandise buy suggests it is likely lucrative business.
Some of the merchandise, such as T-shirts, buttons and signs is likely distributed freely to staff and volunteers around the country. During January and February, the campaign was offering free Obama-Biden bumper stickers to anyone who provided contact information to the campaign online.