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Former Vice President Joe Biden. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Joe Biden's campaign said on Thursday it has raised $15.2 million in Q3, setting the former vice president in 3rd place among the 2020 Democrats who have released their totals thus far.

The state of play: Sen. Bernie Sanders currently leads all 2020 Democrats in Q3 fundraising with $25.3 million, followed by Mayor Pete Buttigieg with $19.1 million. President Trump's re-election campaign and the Republican National Committee recently said they raised a whopping $125 million for Q3, setting a new presidential fundraising record.

  • The Biden campaign reported an average donation of $44.
  • Biden's campaign manager said in a Thursday press release that the campaign has gone forward with "a $6 million ad buy across television and digital in the early states."

Between the lines: Online donations helped Democrats break fundraising records in 2018 and it’s fueling a lot of 2020 candidates now. But, as the New York Times reports, Biden has scaled back on digital ads in favor of more traditional TV advertising in places like Iowa. That might be a play to his older supporters, but he would be likelier to meet young voters where they are online.

  • Biden's team has admitted he’s so far not performing well with younger voters: "It’s not any secret that Biden’s support is strong with older voters," a Biden campaign official said in September. "It’s a big base to have. But we need to do a better job and we will, because we’re not as strong among younger voters.” 
  • Meanwhile, Tara McGowan, a Democratic digital strategist, told Axios she’s "starting to see more primary candidates focus spending and messaging on Facebook to target Iowa voters specifically, which was expected but interesting to note this early."

Where other Democratic candidates stand:

Go deeper: Trump campaign, RNC say they raised record-breaking $125 million in Q3

Go deeper

Biden's big bet backfires

Two key dealmakers — Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) — leave a luncheon in the Capitol yesterday. Photo: Kent Nishimura/L.A. Times via Getty Images

President Biden bit off too much, too fast in trying to ram through what would be the largest social expansion in American history, top Democrats privately say.

Why it matters: At the time Biden proposed it, he had his mind set on a transformational accomplishment that would put him in the pantheon of FDR and JFK.

Biden sinks in swing districts

Photo: Biden speaks about wild fires and climate change in Sacramento on September 13, 2021. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/ AFP via Getty Images

Sudden doubts about President Biden's competence — on Afghanistan, immigration and COVID — are driving double-digit drops in his approval in private polling in swing House seats, The Cook Political Report's Amy Walter writes.

Why it matters: "[T]hese early mistakes go directly to the very rationale of his presidency; that it would be low drama and high competence."

Ina Fried, author of Login
2 hours ago - Technology
Column / Signal Boost

How COVID slowed 5G

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Two years into the 5G era, expensive new cellular networks have blanketed much of the country, but they have yet to change our lives.

Between the lines: It was always going to take some time for 5G's full impact — from faster service to new uses — to arrive. But the pandemic has slowed even some of the initial benefits.