“A fool and his money are soon parted.”
Bernie Sanders says he raised more than $34.5 million in the final three months of last year, showing that a recent heart attack hasn’t slowed the Vermont senator’s fundraising prowess with the start of the Democratic presidential primaries looming.
Sanders’ campaign said Thursday that the haul came from more than 1.8 million donations, including from 40,000 new donors on the final day of the year alone. Sanders’ total exceeds the $24.7 million that Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, announced a day earlier that he’d raised during the fourth quarter of last year.
Strong totals from a nationally known candidate and one virtually unknown when he jumped into the race suggest that their party’s primary could feature a protracted fight among well-funded rivals. The lead-off Iowa caucuses are Feb. 3, and Sanders and Buttigieg are considered among the front-runners in a crowded and unsettled field, along with former Vice President Joe Biden and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
Like Sanders, Warren has relied heavily on small donations coming primarily online. Her campaign raised $24.6 million in the third quarter but said in a recent fundraising email that it had collected around only $17 million with a few days to go — hoping to persuade supporters to open their wallets and improve the final totals
Sanders’ 2020 bid has now raised more than $96 million built on 5 million-plus individual donations worth an average of about $18. Sanders’ campaign says that more than 99% of his donors have not reached federal donation limits, meaning they can contribute again. That total does not include $12.7 million Sanders transferred from other campaign accounts as part of his presidential run.
“Bernie Sanders is closing the year with the most donations of any candidate in history at this point in a presidential campaign.”Faiz Shakir
Sanders Campaign Manager