In addition to polling results, a candidate’s fundraising totals can provide a snapshot of his or her support at a particular point in a campaign.
By that metric, it appears that former President Donald Trump is the leading contender in either party.
At the end of last month, Trump’s campaign had amassed a war chest of more than $22 million, compared to roughly $20 million for President Joe Biden’s re-election bid.
🤯WOAH! This is BIG! James O’Keefe announces 60% of the ActBlue donations they’ve investigated appear to be coming from China! 🇨🇳
— nick moseder (@TheNickyMo) June 27, 2023
Not only is Biden trailing his likeliest Republican challenger early in the campaign, but his fundraising totals lag far behind those of other recent incumbents.
In June 2019, the same point in the 2020 presidential election season, Trump had already raised more than $56 million between his campaign and political action committee. Eight years earlier, then-President Barack Obama had $37 million in his re-election campaign coffers.
Biden also trails behind U.S. Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), who came in at second place with about $21 million on hand.
Although Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was able to raise about $20 million early on in his campaign, he has already spent nearly $8 million attempting to reach voters with his message. Unfortunately for him, the effort does not appear to have paid off as he continues to lose ground in many major polls.
Trump’s campaign not only has the most money, but it is also spending the most, doling out about $9 million between April and June.
Further complicating matters for Biden is the fact that Democratic primary challenger Robert F. Kennedy Jr. — despite being maligned by the mainstream press for his vaccine skepticism — continues to gain traction among the party’s voters. He has reportedly raised an impressive $6 million as of the end of June.
Biden’s fundraising troubles are reportedly a source of serious concern for his campaign staff and Democrats in general who want to see him re-elected.
As one top adviser during Biden’s 2020 campaign told CNN: “If Trump wins next November and everyone says, ‘How did that happen?’ one of the questions will be, ‘What was the Biden campaign doing in the summer of 2023?’”
The president was recently confronted during an interview with the increasing calls from within his own party to step aside and allow a younger candidate to campaign. He replied that his critics are “not right or wrong” for expressing concerns about his age, but asserted that he has gained wisdom throughout his 80 years.
Nevertheless, a recent poll found that 37% of Democrats and independents see Biden’s age as a reason not to vote for him.