Chairman Joe Biden, the Democratic National Committee and their joint fundraising committees raised $72 million in the second quarter of the year, his campaign announced Friday.
Biden also revealed that 394,000 donors contributed to him and the DNC and their committees. Together, the entities had a combined cash position of $77 million as of June 30, when the last fundraising period ended.
The announcement marks the first time Biden has peeked inside his war chest since launching his first re-election campaign in late April – and it’s less compared to other recent presidents in this stage of the cycle.
In 2019, then-President Donald Trump and the Republican National Committee raised $105 million in the second quarter. In 2011, President Barack Obama and the DNC brought in over $86 million. Obama launched his re-election bid in early April that year, while Trump launched the campaign for his second term in mid-June, although he had accepted money before then.
According to the Biden campaign, 97% of all donations during the second quarter were under $200 and 30% of the “donor universe” were new donors since the 2020 campaign. The campaign says its 2024 mailing list has nearly 25 million subscribers. But Biden’s small-dollar operation, at least currently, is smaller than that of his former boss. In 2011, more than 552,000 donors contributed to Obama in the second quarter.
One of Biden’s strengths this quarter is his cash flow, which is higher than Obama’s at this point in the cycle. Biden has run a lean campaign at this early stage in the presidential election, hiring few staff and not yet announcing a seat. His first political rally for his re-election bid was paid for by the unions.
“In my world, we actually have one word for when something like this happens: it’s called a blockbuster,” said Hollywood mogul Jeffrey Katzenberg, Biden’s campaign co-chair. Above all, this is the first real referendum on the work of President Biden that he is doing. And it’s a record landslide.
Asked if Obama has passed Biden at this point in 2011 in his number of donors, Katzenberg argued that the president’s record shows he’s a powerful low-cost fundraiser.
“You’re really, really struggling to find a way to put a gray cloud over these numbers,” he said, adding that it’s a different time than 2011: “I don’t believe we were at war at the time. I don’t believe we had the kind of division that we have. The world is a different place.
In the weeks leading up to the end of this fundraising cycle, Democratic donors had expressed concern about Biden’s fundraising. The president has struggled to raise funds in the past and declined to reveal how much money he has raised this year in the first 24 hours of his re-election campaign. Some of his fundraisers also said it was difficult to sell tickets to a few of his campaign’s recent events.
But Biden’s allies have cautioned against measuring his fundraising against that of Trump or Obama, arguing that these are not apples-to-apples comparisons. For example, they said, Obama jumped into the race in 2011 three weeks earlier than Biden.
Even with those notes of caution, Biden officials on Friday touted that, on a daily basis, Biden’s second-quarter haul was bigger than Obama’s. It was not indicated that Biden is also operating within looser limits on the money he and the DNC can raise. In 2011, individual donations were capped at $2,500 while donations to the party’s national committee were capped at $30,800. Today, those caps are $3,300 and $41,300, respectively.
Biden officials also said their “Dark Brandon” merchandise was particularly successful, generating more than half of their store’s revenue last quarter.
In the days leading up to the president’s announcement, a Biden fundraiser said he was concerned because he had heard little from the campaign about how things were going.
“It’s a little worrying because when I tell you we haven’t gotten any information, I found out more this morning from POLITICO,” the person said, referring to a report on what to do. search in Biden’s financial report. “Nothing that said, ‘Great neighborhood. We’re gonna get you more’ or anything. There was just silence. And as you well know, there were no marching bands in the first 24 hours.
One of Biden’s strengths this quarter is his cash. Biden has run a lean campaign at this early stage in the presidential election, hiring few staff and not yet announcing a seat. His first political rally for his re-election bid was paid for by the unions.
Meanwhile, Republicans vying to oust Biden are in a fierce competition for money. Trump officials said earlier this month his joint fundraising committee raised $35 million in the second quarter of 2023, while Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ campaign said it raised $20 million. million in the first six weeks since launch.