The battle for the White House between Republican John McCain and Democrat Barack Obama, which has witnessed one of the most acrimonious campaigns, is also expected to be the most expensive ever with over USD five billion estimated to be spent on the election cycle. As much USD 5.3 billions is expected to be spent, an amount that is over the Gross Domestic Product of several small countries but something that neither Senator Barack Obama nor Senator John McCain and all of their colleagues in the House of Representatives and Senate even wince about for a nanosecond. According to the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP), the Presidential Race alone is expected to cost USD 2.4 billions. According to Sheila Krumholz, the Executive Director of the CRP the Presidential candidates alone have already raised more than USD 1.5 billion since the election cycle started in January 2007. "This is the first time that candidates for the White House have raised and spent more than USD 1 billion. This year's total is on track to nearly double candidate fundraising in 2004 and triple 2000" Krumholz said in a teleconference. And for Congress all candidates for the House of Representatives and the Senate have raised more than USD 1.5 billion, according to data made available as of October 21. "Weeks before Election Day the 2008 cycle has already surpassed USD 4.5 billion, USD 300 million more than the USD 4.2 billion that had been raised by the conclusion of the 2004 cycle. The overall estimated costs of the 2008 election would represent a 27 per cent increase over the 2004 cycle" Krumholz said making the point that Democrats will have collected 52 per cent more money for their congressional and presidential efforts by the end of this cycle, compared to four years ago.