Remember Phil “Mad Dog” Gramm?

He was the guy who did the medical industry’s dirty work and killed Hillary Clinton’s health care reform bill back in the early days of the Clinton Administration. He later went on to challenge his partner in the Republican anti-reform massacre, Bob Dole, for the 1996 Republican presidential nomination.

Phil was great at stopping programs to help the needy and — coincidentally — a talented fundraiser for his campaign. To compare him to Obama seems sinful, but it needs to be mentioned that in addition to sharing a talent for fundraising, Obama and Gramm are (or were) considered the alternatives to the odds-on favorites for the nomination, especially for party purists — the far left, anti-war crowd for Obama, and the far right, anti-government conservatives for Gramm. Just as Obama is getting most of the ABC vote (anybody but Clinton), Gramm got most of the “anybody but Dole” vote.

Here’s what the New York Times had to say about Gramm and his fundraising:

“Raising a great amount of money early in a campaign sometimes can help propel a candidate to the nomination. Other times it does not seem to help much at all.

According to the Federal Election Commission, former Senator Phil Gramm of Texas raised $13.5 million in the first three months of 1995 as part of his campaign for the 1996 Republican nomination. Yet Mr. Gramm’s fund-raising did not help much: He pulled out of the race in February 1996 after defeats in the Louisiana and Iowa caucuses.”

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