Joe Biden’s campaign announced Thursday that he posted his best fundraising quarter — $22.7 million — since entering the presidential race in April.
Biden’s cash haul for the final quarter of 2019 is a marked improvement from a disappointing third quarter report that showed he spent more than he raised amid anemic fundraising for a frontrunner. Still, he’s well below the massive $34.5 million raised by Democratic rival Sen. Bernie Sanders or the $46 million announced by President Donald Trump. Fellow Democrat Pete Buttigieg ($24.7 million) also raised more.
Biden’s campaign manager, Greg Schultz, attributed some of Biden’s success to Trump’s failed attempt to pressure Ukraine into opening an investigation into the former vice president — a move that led to Trump’s impeachment and, Schultz said, a bump in fundraising.
“Trump’s attacks have majorly backfired, providing our campaign a fundraising boost and reminding Democratic primary voters what we have been saying all along — Trump does not want Biden to be the nominee because he knows Biden will flat out beat him in November,” Schultz wrote in a memo released after the fundraising totals were posted.
“During impeachment our average digital revenue per day more than doubled, up by 121%, where it was in the weeks preceding impeachment.”
Trump’s campaign manager, Brad Parscale, has also claimed that impeachment benefited his candidate.
Though Biden isn’t tops in primary fundraising, his campaign managed expectations by pointing to his improvement since the previous quarter, his standing atop national polls and his recent uptick in surveys of Iowa, which holds its caucuses Feb. 3.
Biden raised more in the first two months of the fourth quarter than he did in the entire third quarter, which included a bump in online fundraising, a Biden senior adviser said recently. That included picking up donors from two candidates who had dropped out of the race — Kamala Harris and Beto O’Rourke — the adviser said.
According to Biden’s campaign, the former veep doubled his online fundraising from the last quarter and 57 percent of its donors this quarter gave for the first time.
“Our campaign’s momentum in recent weeks and months is impossible to miss,” Schultz wrote.
Though he’s well short of the numbers touted by Trump and Sanders, Biden’s latest figures could help allay the nervousness surrounding his candidacy after his fundraising lagged in the third quarter. Biden demonstrated he could stop the bleeding as his new online fundraising stats suggest he has room to grow, despite worries that he had maxed out from the kinds of donors who would support him.
Another factor in Biden’s favor: an independent super PAC is pouring money into early state ads and boosting his candidacy.
Biden’s fundraising announcement came just hours after he kicked off a five-day Iowa bus tour with an endorsement from home-state Rep. Abby Finkenauer, who wrested control of her seat from a Republican incumbent in 2018 with the help of Biden’s endorsement.
None of the campaigns has released detailed reports, due to the Federal Election Commission later this month, that show how much cash they raised, spent or have on hand.
Natasha Korecki contributed to this report.
Article originally published on POLITICO Magazine
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