Without McCain-Feingold and without the Internet, Clinton would have crushed the opposition. But she didn't. And Obama caught the next generation's wave. Josh Green has a great article in the June Atlantic on Obama's fundraising. Full of new reporting, it helps put into focus the extraordinary breakthrough the Obama campaign represents in online campaigning. I learned an awful lot. Money quote:
Obama is a gifted politician by anyone’s measure, but what distinguishes him from earlier insurgents is his ability to fully harness the excitement that his candidacy has created, in votes and in dollars. Three forces had to come together for this to happen: the effect of campaign-finance laws in broadening the number and types of people who fund the political process; the emergence of Northern California as one of the biggest sources of Democratic money; and the recognition by a few Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and venture capitalists that the technology and business practices they had developed in their day jobs could have a transformative effect on national politics.