The Philadelphia Inquirer:
President Obama's main campaign fund has fallen considerably behind its 2008 pace in raising cash from the Philadelphia region.
Mitt Romney's campaign, meantime, is running well ahead of the pace set by Sen. John McCain's four years ago.
Recent reports submitted to the Federal Election Commission show that, as of May 31, Obama's principal fund - Obama for America - had raised $2.84 million from individual donors in the eight-county area.
That was well more than Romney's haul, but 31 percent less than the $4.1 million Obama had taken in at a comparable point in 2008.
(...) Romney, who was an early contender for the 2008 Republican nomination won by McCain, took in $2.35 million through his Romney for President committee as of May 31 - $494,000 less than Obama.
But he was doing almost twice as well as McCain's campaign at a similar point in the election cycle. McCain's fund, as of May 2008, had raised $1.25 million.
The Philadelphia region, with its eight-county population of 5.5 million, has long been a major source of cash for presidential contenders of both parties. But the region's concentration of labor unions, trial lawyers, and minority voters - key elements of the Democratic coalition - has made it especially key for Democrats.
Romney's gains over McCain reflect greater enthusiasm this year among GOP donors that their party can win the White House, said Charles G. Kopp, a Republican fund-raiser in Philadelphia.
"More Republicans in the eight-county Philadelphia region believe Romney will win in 2012 than believed McCain would win in 2008," he said.
(...) The FEC data show that Romney's biggest gains over McCain at this point in the cycle have been in Philadelphia's Pennsylvania suburbs, where he has raised $1.89 million, doubling McCain's $948,000 at a comparable point.
The Pennsylvania suburbs were the only part of the region in which Romney led Obama. He was not quite $283,000 ahead.
Obama led by $680,000 in Philadelphia and $96,000 in South Jersey.
(...) Contributions to Obama for America through May of this year were down across the board from four years ago - down 35 percent in the Pennsylvania suburbs, 27 percent in Philadelphia, and 14 percent in South Jersey.