$24.8 million in 24 hours: Show of financial power from Trump and GOP

Democratic strategists have fretted for months that Trump will spend 2019 building up a large war chest while the 23 Democrats running for president raise far smaller sums and then use that money to bludgeon one another in the primary campaign.

$24.8 million in 24 hours: Show of financial power from Trump and GOP

Trump’s one-day total was more than any Democratic presidential candidate raised in the entire first quarter of 2019, though it included money that went to joint fundraising operations with the Republican National Committee. It came as he held a huge rally in Orlando, Florida, on Tuesday night, telling throngs of cheering supporters that his new campaign slogan would be “Keep America Great.”

Democratic strategists have fretted for months that Trump will spend 2019 building up a large war chest while the 23 Democrats running for president raise far smaller sums and then use that money to bludgeon one another in the primary campaign.

Trump had already raised nearly $100 million for his reelection effort by the end of March and had more than $40 million still on hand at that time. His campaign has spent millions of dollars on online advertising on platforms like Facebook and Google to find potential small donors, an investment that appeared to pay off handsomely Tuesday.

As an incumbent president, Trump also has the advantage of raising larger sums of money through his party.

A spokesman for the RNC said the $24.8 million figure was the total for the Trump campaign and its two joint fundraising committees with the party, which can accept bigger checks.

Republicans had organized a day of phone calls to major donors Tuesday to maximize their fundraising haul.

All told, $6 million was raised online, with an average contribution of $44; $8 million came from the phone-bank operation run jointly by the campaign and the RNC, and $10.8 million came from larger donors to the RNC, a party official said.

Trump also attended a fundraiser Wednesday at his resort in Doral, Florida, that was expected to raise about $4 million, according to a person briefed on the numbers.

Trump filed papers with the Federal Election Commission for his reelection campaign Jan. 20, 2017, the day he was inaugurated, but his team considered Tuesday the public kickoff of his 2020 bid.

The single-day take of $24.8 million was nearly quadruple what former Vice President Joe Biden collected in the 24 hours after he officially declared himself a candidate, $6.3 million. Biden’s 24-hour total was the best of any Democrat in the race.

In fact, Trump’s haul was more than Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, Sen. Kamala Harris and Sen. Elizabeth Warren raised in their first 24 hours as candidates — combined.

Sanders raised the most money of any Democrat in the first quarter of this year, $18.2 million, followed by Harris ($12 million) and O’Rourke ($9.4 million). Biden, who entered the race in April, has not yet filed a quarterly fundraising report but told donors this week that his campaign had raised nearly $20 million so far.

Trump and his allies celebrated their fundraising success on Twitter on Wednesday. “Crushing the competition,” wrote Brad Parscale, the president’s campaign manager.

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.

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