Obama, Democratic Party raise $43.6 million in April

US President Barack Obama speaks during a campaign fundraiser May 14, 2012 at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City.
Getty Images/Mandel Ngan

(CBS News) President Obama's re-election campaign on Wednesday reported raising $43.6 million in donations in April in conjunction with the Democratic Party, cash the campaign is using to set up a ground game in key swing states and run ads against the presumptive Republican nominee, Mitt Romney.

In a video released on Wednesday, Obama campaign manager Jim Messina announced that the $43 million haul came 437,323 "grassroots supporters," including 169,500 first-time supporters. The average donation size was $50.23, with 98 percent of the donations $250 or less.

The figure is down from March, when the Obama campaign raised $53 million, but it doesn't include the money raised at recent lucrative events, such as the Hollywood fundraiser at George Clooney's house last week that brought in $15 million.

In his video message, Messina stressed that the Obama camp isn't just running against Romney, but also against well-funded conservative super PACs. He pointed out that groups opposed to the president have spent $60 million so far.

Messina highlighted the states in which the Obama campaign is spending its money, noting the campaign is doing "the most work on the ground" in Ohio, opening six new field offices there and hiring 61 new team leaders. The campaign is also building up a "massive" operation in Florida and building infrastructure in Western states like Colorado and Nevada.

According to Messina, the Obama team has also hired 22 new staff members in North Carolina, a state Mr. Obama carried in 2008 but is expected to be harder for the president to win this year. Messina said they're adding staff there "because we believe so strongly that we can win the south this time around."