While Joe Biden’s reelection campaign has been raking in cash from deep-pocketed Democrat donors and corporations, the small-dollar donors that helped him smash fundraising records in 2020 have yet to materialize, the New York Times reported.
During the second quarter of 2023, the Biden campaign and its joint fundraising vehicle the Biden Victory Fund brought in only $10.2 million from small donors. By comparison, in the second quarter of 2011, Barack Obama’s reelection campaign raised $21 million from small-dollar donors.
Small-dollar donors are the supporters who contribute $200 or less.
Democrat fundraisers and Biden campaign staffers have offered several excuses for why the president’s small-dollar donations are so anemic.
According to the New York Times, they point to problems with email fundraising drives now that Apple and Google have made it more difficult for the campaign to see who opened emailed solicitations. On top of that, after a constant barrage of emails asking for money, many voters have gotten so sick of them that they are ignoring the campaign’s emailed pleas for cash.
Democrats also suggest that their base isn’t particularly fired up about the election right now. What’s more, Joe Biden is not the kind of insurgent candidate that fires up voters, especially younger voters, depriving the president of supporters eager to “rage-donate” to his reelection campaign, according to the Times.
Hollywood producer Jeffrey Katzenberg, the co-chair of Biden’s campaign, told the New York Times that without a “day-to-day competition combat” right now, the most loyal, dedicated supporters aren’t motivated to get engaged. Katzenberg added that this is likely to change “over time.”
The campaign’s most recent FEC filing shows that old working-class, “lunch bucket Joe” Biden is far more dependent on deep-pocketed donors than Donald Trump was during his 2020 reelection campaign or Biden’s opponents were during the 2020 Democrat primaries.
Biden’s campaign haul during the previous quarter was fueled largely by ten donors who gave at least $500,000 to the Biden Victory Fund and another 82 donors who each contributed at least $100,000.