President Trump has smashed a record for the most money raised by any sitting president in history at this point in his campaign. A cool $300 million in the coffers, it’s sure to be ringing more than alarm bells in the Democrats camp.
To put that amount in perspective, Barack Obama, at the same point in his campaign, had just over half that amount—$158 million between his account and the DNC.
Priorities USA is the largest Democratic Party super PAC, but it has outlaid only one-tenth of what the Trump campaign has spent on TV and digital advertising.
Chris Lippincott, a Democratic strategist from Texas who ran a super PAC to oppose Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) in 2018, is one of many who are becoming concerned at the amount of money the Trump campaign has raised.
“The resources he has will be put to work anywhere and everywhere that he feels like he can scare up electoral votes, and Democrats will never catch up. It’s just too much money,” said Lippincott, as reported by Politico. “That’s real trouble,” he added.
Meanwhile, where is the Democratic nominee? It is probably several months before they settle on one.
The money is enabling the president to reach many more potential donors through social media, as the 2020 election looms closer.
“We don’t know if the Democratic candidate is going to be able to even compete with such a shorter timeline, even if they have significant resources after the convention,” said founder, and chief executive officer of the progressive group ACRONYM.
Mark Longabaugh, a senior adviser to Bernie Sanders’s 2016 presidential campaign, said the ability of the Democrats to match the Trump campaign financially “could be a huge challenge,” reported Politico.
“Trump and the Republicans are bankrolling an enormous amount of money, and they have no competitive primary or very little of one,” he said. “I think it could be a struggle.”
Rufus Gifford, former finance director for Obama’s 2012 re-election, has compared the level of expertise of the Trump campaign as similar to Obama’s 2012 campaign.
“We were sophisticated, we were organized, and we were well-funded. This is everything the Trump operation is. Taking away his craziness, he has an extremely professional operation,” said Gifford.
“We have got to be prepared, six months from now or less, to make sure that the nominee’s political operation is ready to hit the ground running, and ready to do everything they can do” to win the election, Gifford said.
Charles Chamberlain, chairman of the progressive group Democracy for America, said he is less concerned about the money and more concerned that “Democrats nominate somebody who doesn’t inspire the grass-roots.”
Democrats are “delusional” if they think “that winning in 2020 is going to be a cakewalk,” he said.