Dem Dollar$

Klobuchar gains as Warren slips, while Sanders leads the field

NASHUA – As New Hampshire Democrats continue weighing their options for the Feb. 11 first-in-the-nation (#FITN) presidential primary, fundraising and the ability to compete with President Donald Trump may be a key concern.

This week, organizers with the Trump re-election campaign announced raising a “staggering $46 million” during the final three months of 2019, while also referring to their team as a “juggernaut.”

Among the Democratic contenders, Bernie Sanders of Vermont came the closest to this total with $34.5 million during the fourth quarter.

“Together, we’re proving you don’t need to beg the wealthy and the powerful for campaign contributions in order to win elections,” Sanders said via Twitter. “I’m incredibly proud to announce we raised $34.5 million from 1.8 million contributions in the fourth quarter. Our average contribution: just $18.”

Meanwhile, consecutive strong debate performances by Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota helped her raise $11.4 million during the fourth quarter, which she said was double the amount she had previously collected in any quarter.

Klobuchar tweeted: “I’m incredibly grateful to all our grassroots supporters who helped us raise $11.4 million this quarter (twice as much as we have ever raised in a single quarter before).”

Although Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts continues to lead Klobuchar by double digits in public opinion polls, Warren saw her fundraising total drop from 2019’s third quarter to the fourth quarter.

Warren reported collections of $24.6 million from July 1 to Sept. 30, but the total for Oct. 1 to Dec. 31 fell to $21.2 million.

“In 2019, nearly one million donors pitched in to raise more than $71 million for our grassroots movement–with zero closed-door fundraisers,” Warren tweeted. “I’m so deeply grateful for everyone supporting our campaign. Team Warren is ready to dream big, fight hard, and win!”

During the December debate in Los Angeles, Warren sparred with Indiana’s Pete Buttigieg over his so-called “wine cave” fundraiser. Whatever the means Buttigieg is using to obtain funds, it seems to be working, as he totaled $24.7 million in the fourth quarter.

“With more than 2 million donations by more than 733,000 individuals in 2019, it’s clear the American people are responding to Pete’s message of rallying our country together around bold solutions that will build the coalition we need to beat Trump and usher in a new era the day after Trump leaves office,” Buttigieg campaign manager Mike Schmuhl said.

Though Joe Biden of Delaware continues leading national polls, he trails both Sanders and Buttigieg in fundraising for the fourth quarter, as the former vice president took in $22.7 million.

“These numbers clearly demonstrate Donald Trump’s lies and attacks on the vice president have only cemented and expanded his support, serving as a constant reminder to Democratic primary voters that Trump is terrified by the idea of facing Joe Biden in a general election,” Biden campaign manager Greg Schultz said. “We’re also seeing significant support from Democrats who previously supported other candidates and are now rallying behind the candidate they believe can bring the country together and beat Donald Trump.”

Newcomer Andrew Yang of New York, known best for his plan to pay each and every American $1,000 per month, remains competitive with a $16.5 million collection during the quarter.

“At every turn in this race, Andrew Yang continues to exceed expectations whether it’s in terms of grassroots fundraising, making the debates, early state polling, or the ability to draw big crowds,” Yang campaign manager Nick Ryan said. “What we have achieved together to date through the humanity first values of this campaign, now sets us up to compete through the early-state primaries, Super Tuesday, and beyond.”

Also, Cory Booker of New Jersey reported raising $6.6 million in the quarter, while Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii came up with $3.4 million.

Whoever ultimately wins the Democratic nomination will find him or herself matched against the Trump fundraising machine. Campaign chief Brad Parscale said the Trump team is ready to roll.

“The president’s war chest and grassroots army make his re-election campaign an unstoppable juggernaut,” Parscale said.