Mitt Romney

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, the Republican Party and a constellation of outside GOP groups entered the final campaign stretch with a nearly $46 million cash advantage for the last-minute advertising and get-out-the-vote push in this nail-biter election, a USA Today analysis of new campaign reports shows.

The candidates and political parties collectively have raised close to $2 billion through the end of September, giving Romney and President Barack Obama ample cash to devote legions of staffers to swing states.

In a conversation with reporters on Monday, one of presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s chief advisers, Ed Gillespie, hinted that the campaign was hoping to bank enough money in the coming days so that Romney would no longer need to spend as much time courting donors.

Mitt Romney's success in raising hundreds of millions of dollars in the costliest presidential race ever can be traced in part to a data-mining project that sifts through Americans' personal information — including their purchasing history and church attendance — to identify new and likely wealthy donors, the Associated Press has learned.

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