FOURTH QUARTER WAS STRONG FOR SOCIALISM
The Bernie Sanders presidential campaign says it raised more than $34.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2019, likely more than any other Democrat candidate has raised in any quarter of last year.
Although the Federal Election Commission quarterly report is not due until Jan. 15, Sanders’ campaign released the strong numbers to show its candidate, who suffered a heart attack in October, is the leading contender for the Democrats.
Sanders received 900,000 individual donations in December alone, the campaign said, and has had over five million donors so far in 2019, with a total raised of more than $87 million.
Sanders is popular with Alaska Democrats, who strongly preferred him during the Democratic caucuses in 2016. In fact, Sanders’ second strongest state in 2016, after his home state of Vermont, was Alaska, where he won 80 percent of the caucus vote and 83 percent of state convention delegates.
He carried every borough and census area in the state by a wide margin over Hillary Clinton, the establishment candidate who went on to win the Democratic nomination, but his voters were disenfranchised by the Alaska Democratic Party during the scandal that was uncovered by Wikileaks.
During the fourth quarter of 2019, the most frequent donors to Sanders, an avowed Socialist, listed their job title as “teacher,” a trend that may worry conservatives already concerned about what increasingly radicalized teachers are instructing children in the classrooms of America.
According to the Sanders campaign, the top five most commonly listed employers of his donors are Amazon, Starbucks, Walmart, the U.S. Postal Service, and Target.
Sanders has been a harsh critic of Amazon and Walmart, as well as other corporations that do not pay the $15 an hour minimum wage that he wants as the federal minimum. Amazon does pay $15 an hour, as of last year.
Other campaigns that announced their fundraising amounts for the fourth quarter were Pete Buttigieg and Andrew Yang.
Buttigieg raised $24.7 million, while Yang says he raised $16.5 million.
Buttigieg’s campaign says he received over 700,000 individual donations.
Elizabeth Warren sent a letter to supporters late last week saying that she had raised just over $17 million so far in the fourth quarter. That’s a significant drop from the $24.6 million she raised in the third quarter. Her final number has not been announced for the fourth quarter, but will probably come in close to $19.5 million.
Joe Biden set a note to his supporters earlier this week, pushing for donations in the final two days of the year. In the third quarter he raised $15.7 million, far less than the $21.5 million he raised in the second quarter.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar raised $4.8 million in the third quarter and has not yet announced her fundraising totals for the fourth quarter.
Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg entered the race on Nov. 24, 2019, and has already spent at least $155.3 million on political ads as he tries to muscle his way onto the field. He has not announced his fourth quarter fundraising, but it’s likely to be insignificant, since he is self-funding his campaign.
The Democrats’ next debate is Jan. 14 at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. Hosted by CNN and the DeMoines Register, this seventh debate will be limited to those who secured 225,000 unique donors and earned 5 percent or more in four DNC-sanctioned national polls, or 7 percent in two DNC-sanctioned “early state” polls.
Those qualifying for the debate so far are Biden, Sanders, Warren, Klobuchar, and Buttigieg.
On Thursday, Julian Castro dropped out of the race. The former Housing and Urban Development Secretary made his announcement in a video published by the New York Times, saying, “With only a month until the Iowa caucuses and given the circumstances of this campaign season, I’ve determined that it simply isn’t our time.”
As for the president, the Donald Trump campaign raised $46 million in the fourth quarter. Although that is more than any individual Democrat candidate, the large Democrat field as a whole will have raised more than $80 million in the fourth quarter.