“If your ideas are actually popular, you can raise lots of money without relying on lobbyist fundraisers.”
Former Vice President Joe Biden’s heavy reliance on high-dollar fundraisers with billionaire real estate tycoons, insurance CEOs, and natural gas executives did not appear to pay off in the third quarter of 2019 as Biden’s campaign Thursday night announced he raised $15.2 million during that period, trailing by over $10 million the grassroots haul posted by rival White House hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders.
Biden’s total represents a nearly $7 million decline from the previous quarter, a drop-off that comes as the former vice president has seen his polling advantage erode nationally and in several key primary states. According to the Biden campaign, the average donation to the former vice president over the past three months was $44, a sharp contrast with Sanders’s $18 average.
“Imagine spending all of your time clinking glasses with billionaire donors, reassuring them that ‘nothing needs to change,’ and STILL getting outraised by a small-donor-only socialist.”
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who has gained on and surpassed Biden in recent polls, has not yet unveiled her fundraising numbers for the third quarter.
Biden first announced his totals during a big-money fundraiser Thursday in Palo Alto, California, where tickets sold for $1,500 and $2,800, the latter being the maximum amount an individual can donate to a presidential campaign.
The former vice president told his rich supporters that the United States doesn’t “need some radical, radical socialist kind of answer” to inequality, an apparent shot at Sanders, who identifies as a democratic socialist.
“You’ve just got to make capitalism work like it’s supposed to work. We’ve got to save capitalism from this guy,” Biden said, referring to President Donald Trump.
Progressive critics were quick to seize upon Biden’s underwhelming fundraising numbers as evidence of the limitations of relying on billionaire donors and the benefits of Sanders’s grassroots approach.
“When you rely on a small number of wealthy donors who max out at $2,800, your pool is gonna dry up,” said Alex Kotch, senior investigative reporter and editor at Sludge. “Sanders relies on over a million, mostly small, donors, most of whom can keep donating.”
“If your ideas are actually popular,” added Kotch, “you can raise lots of money without relying on lobbyist fundraisers.”
As the New York Times reported Thursday, Biden “spent much of his time at high-dollar fundraisers” during the final days of the third quarter, “often attending two or even three in one day as he visited wealthy enclaves like Bel Air, Calif., and Park City, Utah.”
The socialist magazine Jacobin tweeted in response to Biden’s numbers, “Imagine spending all of your time clinking glasses with billionaire donors, reassuring them that ‘nothing needs to change,’ and STILL getting outraised by a small-donor-only socialist.”
RNC chair attacks ‘progressive liberal’ Pete Buttigieg – says Trump would beat him for lack of foreign policy experience
Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel is targeting Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, apparently seeing his rise in the polls as a threat to President Donald Trump.
McDaniel Thursday told reporters at a breakfast meeting the South Bend, Indiana mayor who currently is polling in first place in Iowa is not a moderate but a "progressive liberal," and insisted President Trump would beat him should he become the Democratic nominee, The Hill reports.
Democrat debate exposes divides despite united front on Trump
Divides between Democrats vying to challenge President Donald Trump in the 2020 election were laid bare in a combative debate Wednesday, as the campaign's rising star Pete Buttigieg acknowledged he faced challenges in attracting black voters.
Buttigieg, the contest's youngest candidate who occupies the same moderate lane as frontrunner Joe Biden, offered a unifying message as a way to bring Democrats and Republicans toward a broad political middle.
Democrats can seize a majority on issues like immigration and guns "if we can galvanize, not polarize that majority," Buttigieg told the debate in Georgia.
Democratic candidates demand investigation into toxic culture at NBC ahead of MSNBC debate
Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Kamala Harris of California and Cory Booker of New Jersey signed a letter calling the allegations of “sexual assault and harassment” by employees and “a cover-up by NBC’s management” deeply “troubling.” Instead of addressing the company, the senators issued their letter to Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez.