Wealthy Republican party donors, who have long been the fear of Democrat candidates, have a problem. Who should they back to get rid of President Obama? The more popular candidates seem unsuitable, but candidates with potential have been slow to come to the race. At this point in the race four years ago, the New York Times notes, the top tier of Republican candidates had already raised more than $50 million among them. By the end of the first quarter this year, only one major contender, Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, had even opened an exploratory committee to raise money. And thus far only Mitt Romney has managed to put together a decent crop of Republican financiers.
According to the Times, donors holding back has given rise to a sort of chicken-and-egg problem:
Many prospective candidates “want to have more tangible evidence that the support will be there if they start out,” said Al Cardenas, a former Florida Republican Party chairman... “Then there are the donors who don’t yet have a candidate — they’re being more cautious to say, ‘You know what, I’m waiting it out to see what the whole field looks like.’
Another problem is that the many favored candidates have pulled out of the race, leaving donors with nowhere to go. David A. Norcross, a former general counsel for the Republican National Committee, had planned to support Haley Barbour, but is now in a "wait-and-see category."