Joe Biden and the Democrats have been hauling in record fundraising totals ever since he won a landslide of primaries during Super Tuesday in March, which helped propel him to become the party’s presumptive nominee for president.
Much of that success is due to small-dollar donors. Biden’s campaign announced Monday that they, along with the Democratic National Committee, raised over $80 million in May, a historic amount, with an average donation of $30. As noted on Twitter by Biden’s deputy campaign manager Rufus Gifford, the total surpassed President Barack Obama’s 2012 May haul and Hillary Clinton’s final amount over the same time period when she ran for president in 2016.
Yet some bundlers working the fundraising circuit for Biden have started noticing that some big money donors in their networks have been absent in recent weeks, according to people with knowledge of the matter. They declined to be named as these fundraising efforts are made in private.
Some influential donors remain too busy with their own businesses in dealing with the coronavirus. Others are not yet sold on Biden’s candidacy and are waiting to see whom he picks as his running mate.
“We don’t have every big donor already in, but many are, and we continue to recruit,” said one active Biden fundraiser. Another pointed to how some financiers had stronger relationships with past candidates, such as the Clintons, but that eventually they’ll all fall in line.
“The biggest donors have money to give-but they just had a much longer history and connection to the Clinton’s,” another fundraiser said. “They will get more active, especially after a VP is announced.”
Others, such as Ken Jarin, a partner at Ballard Spahr who is fundraising for Biden, say that they haven’t struggled with getting support from wealthier donors and that it’s with a combination at the grassroots level giving the former vice president a recent run of success.
“There is tremendous enthusiasm both at a grassroots level and with higher level donors and raisers,” Jarin said, while noting a recent virtual event that he co-hosted with former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell and others, raised $1.6 million. “We raised from $500 to $50,000. Virtually no one I reached out to turned me down.”
While support from big money players has been inconsistent, Biden has had to rely on a large number of small dollar supporters in order to keep up with Trump’s financial war chest. So far, it has worked out for the former vice president.
The Biden campaign alone raised close to $42 million in April with a little over $16 million, or 37%, coming from small donations, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. President Donald Trump, on the other hand, saw $9 million of almost $16 million come from donors giving less than $200. Those totals do not include the respective campaigns’ combined efforts with the DNC and the Republican National Committee, or the amounts that have been raised by super PACs supporting…
Read More: Biden gets boost from small donations as some wealthy donors sit on sidelines