Jul 16, 2019

Q2 fundraising: Trump still winning the money race

Data: FEC; Note: Trump fundraising does not include receipts from Trump Victory and Trump Make America Great Again Committee; Chart: Harry Stevens/Axios

Until election day on November 3, 2020, Axios will be tracking the fundraising of every candidate for federal office.

Why it matters: President Trump raised more money than any other candidate for a second straight quarter, according to fundraising reports filed Monday with the Federal Election Commission, but even with Democratic contributions split among a wide field of candidates, top candidates are demonstrating they can compete with Trump in the money race.

  • Still, the president's fundraising declined from the previous quarter, from $30.3 million to $26.5 million. Meanwhile, Democratic competitors like Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg increased their fundraising totals and narrowed the money gap between themselves and Trump.
  • But, but, but: Trump had a head start, and he still has a far larger war chest than any potential opponent.

If fundraising is a proxy for voter enthusiasm, Sanders is positioned for another long presidential race. The Vermont senator finished second to Trump in second quarter fundraising, reporting $25.7 million in receipts and improving his fundraising haul from the first quarter.

  • Beto O'Rourke lost momentum, falling nearly $6 million shy of his first quarter fundraising mark. Kirsten Gillibrand, Amy Klobuchar, Cory Booker, and Tulsi Gabbard also saw their fundraising drop from last quarter.
  • Joe Biden raised $22 million, fourth among all candidates.
Data: FEC; Note: Trump fundraising does not include receipts from Trump Victory and Trump Make America Great Again Committee; Chart: Harry Stevens/Axios

The race to replace Arizona Senator John Kyl is shaping up to be a costly one between astronaut Mark Kelly and fighter pilot Martha McSally, who raised the most and second most among all Senate candidates in the second quarter.

  • After losing a close Senate race to Democrat Kristen Sinema last year, McSally was appointed to Arizona's other Senate seat by the governor.
  • Kelly is married to former U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords, who survived an assassination attempt in 2011.

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell raised $3.1 million in the second quarter, good for third among Senate candidates. McConnell has been challenged by multiple Democrats, including fighter pilot Amy McGrath.

Data: FEC; Chart: Harry Stevens/Axios

In the House, entrenched incumbents padded their fundraising leads over any potential challengers.

  • Steve Scalise of Louisiana raised about $3 million, the most of any House candidate for the second straight quarter.
  • He was trailed by former Intelligence Committee chair Devin Nunes and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi brought in $1.3 million, while freshman Democrat and progressive favorite Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez brought in $1.2 million.

  • More than four-fifths of Ocasio-Cortez' fundraising total came from donors who gave less than $200.
Data: FEC; Chart: Harry Stevens/Axios

Go deeper

Track the 2020 Democrats' Q2 fundraising

July 15 at midnight was the deadline for 2020 presidential candidates to upload their fundraising disclosures for the second quarter of 2019 to the Federal Election Commission.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Jul 17, 2019

Lower-tier 2020 candidates have highest share of small-dollar donations

Various lower-tier candidates are leading the 2020 race in one way: they've raised most of their money from small-dollar donors.

Why it matters: Fundraising as a whole can be a proxy for voter enthusiasm. But especially small donations, which Democrats have been fighting to get from regular people who want to give their money to campaigns — and mostly online.

Go deeperArrowJul 17, 2019

Exclusive: Pro-Trump outside groups jointly raise $17.8 million

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The pro-Trump super PAC America First Action and its affiliated 501(c)(4) nonprofit, America First Policies, have jointly raised $17.83 million in the first 6 months of 2019 and will report $21 million cash on hand to the Federal Election Commission, according to an America First Action official.

Where it stands: The conservative organization, which Trump has blessed and which is led by former Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon, reports having jointly brought in 16,649 total donations from 11,655 unique contributors. An America First Action official also told Axios it has $40 million in outstanding donor pledges, and has collected $3.75 million of those pledges since the end of the reporting period on June 30.

Go deeperArrowJul 31, 2019